Democrats, Republicans push for legislation for essential caregivers

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – Some lawmakers say caregivers were denied access to loved ones in long-term care facilities during the pandemic and some of those loved ones died in isolation.

NewsChannel 34’s Basil John reports as Democrats and Republicans are pushing for congress to pass legislation ensuring this doesn’t happen in the future.

NEW YORK CONGRESSWOMAN CLAUDIA TENNEY AND OTHER HOUSE LAWMAKERS SAY RESIDENTS IN LONG TERM CARE FACILITIES SHOULD NEVER BE COMPLETELY CUT-OFF FROM THEIR LOVED ONES.

“Many of them are sitting in isolation in these care facilities.”

THE ESSENTIAL CAREGIVERS ACT WOULD ALLOW RESIDENTS TO DESIGNATE ESSENTIAL CAREGIVERS WHO COULD CONTINUE TO PROVIDE SUPPORT, EVEN DURING A PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY.

DURING THE PEAK OF THE PANDEMIC, CAREGIVERS COULD NOT BE PRESENT AS THEIR LOVED ONES DIED IN ISOLATION.

“When you see these heartbreaking photos of family members looking through windows, into their loved ones, who’s all alone, in a room, and in some cases doesn’t understand what’s going on.”

“They were not able to provide that personal family visit.”

VIRGINIA DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSWOMAN ABIGAIL SPANBERGER SAYS THE BILL PUTS CAREGIVERS CONCERNS AT THE FRONT.

“We are thinking toward the future in the event of another emergency.”

THE BILL ENSURES NECESSARY ACCESS FOR CAREGIVERS WHILE ALSO MAINTAINING SAFETY STANDARDS AND PROTOCOLS AT THE FACILITIES.

“We don’t know what we’re getting, which is why those precautions are there.”

AND THEY SAY THE KEY NOW IS TO NOT LET HISTORY REPEAT ITSELF.

“It’s about learning from what happened in the past, recognizing that we do not ever want to see a repeat of the circumstances of 2020, for so many reasons.”

BOTH TENNEY AND SPANBERGER ARE HOPEFUL FOR MOVEMENT ON THIS BILL BY THE END OF 2022.

REPORTING IN WASHINGTON I’M BASIL JOHN.

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