Nursing home resumes visits after long wait due to COVID-19 restrictions

Published: Mar. 3, 2021 at 6:14 PM EST
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MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WILX) - For the first time in a year, nursing homes and long-term care facilities across the state are welcoming visitors --regardless of how quickly COVID is spreading through their community.

Many families are eager to see their loved ones on Wednesday after the governor announced the change on Tuesday.

“We did the calculations, 361 days. It was a Saturday and you guys announced we’re canceling brunch for tomorrow,” said Tammy Shorna.

Like a kid waiting for Christmas, Shorna has been counting down the days until she could finally see her dad again.

The day has officially come.

Shorna and her mom Gerry Tibbits got as close to Lew as they possibly could

“To my wife, you’re more beautiful than ever, oh boy,” said Lew Tibbits.

When the governor announced nursing home restrictions would be lifted effective immediately, they were the first in line.

“I told them we would jump through any hoop as long as we could see you,” said Tammy Shorna.

“She was going to go down and protest at the capitol saying that it should be open because it worked for high school sports,” said Gerry Tibbits. “It’s so different than the window, isn’t it? No telephone to have to hold.”

It’s been a rough year for Lew from breaking his neck to even getting the virus.

“It was a bummer. I wanted to hug ‘em and all that stuff and I just couldn’t,” said Lew Tibbits. “The things they won’t let us do are understandable but it’s good to be in this room with my wife and daughter”

Tammy says there was a point where they said their final goodbyes to Lew from a window.

“We know that we’re through the toughest part of this pandemic and we know that dad survived all of it,” said Shorna.

For that, they’re grateful-even though there’s still a little distance between them.

“I am going home very happy. It’s almost like a weight has been lifted off,” said Shorna.

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