It's coming up on a year since the pandemic forced the doors of North Dakota's long term care facilities to close.  Separating thousands of friends and family members from the ones they love who were now trapped behind those closed doors.  Restrictions have been loosening at facilities around the state.  Here's a portion of today's report from

With over 85 percent of North Dakota’s long-term care residents now fully vaccinated for COVID-19, Gov. Doug Burgum announced today that the state will shift from state-driven guidance to locally driven decisions in basic care and assisted living facilities, while also providing testing supplies to all long-term care facilities as they transition to a post-vaccination phase. 

Can Bingo be far away?

About 8 in 10 assisted living facilities in the state have already been easing visitation restrictions. Today's announcement signals our decision to move from state driven guidance to putting the control back with local entities.  The state will still assist with testing supplies and other aspects of the ongoing pandemic battle.

It's interesting to read that while 85% of the long term residents have received the vaccine, only about half of the long term care staff have gotten the vaccine.  Not because of a lack of availability- they simply have opted against it.

Governor Burgum on the other hand, rolled up his sleeve today for shot number one of two.  Other North Dakota vaccine news of interest involves, the Bismarck Diocese approving the use of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine under circumstances where there are no other alternatives. Initially, the Diocese had refused it's use for church members citing the use of fetal cells in producing and manufacturing the Johnson and Johnson vaccine variety,

Hopefully the vaccine continues to open doors to the feeling of familiarity.

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