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Pandemic rules make connecting with loved ones in Valley nursing homes an emotional struggle

One local man, Timothy Daugherty, simply wishes he could spend time with his elderly parents.

PHOENIX — The coronavirus pandemic is hitting everyone hard and in so many different ways. From the illness itself to the economy, and even families right here in the Valley.

One local man, Timothy Daugherty, simply wishes he could spend time with his elderly parents. Daugherty tells us his folks have been at a nursing home for several years and while they don't have COVID-19, their livelihood is deteriorating because of it.

"They cannot get that initial camaraderie and the love and what makes a family a family," he told 12News.

Daugherty explains that his frustration stems from a lack of effort to make changes to the rules even since the pandemic hit.

"After four months and there's nothing in place of how these families can still be with their families before they are gone," he added.

His mom and dad who are both in their 80s have been tested at least twice for the virus and while they tested negative, it doesn't change the guidelines that are currently in place.

"It's taken a toll on all of us, it's been difficult to call on the phone or even do video chats because you know they can't hear and they can't see," he admitted.

Plus, with limited access for safety's sake, Daugherty says it's heartbreaking for him and even his siblings who live out of state.

"I tried to explain to my sisters and brothers, it doesn't matter if you're here or if you live a thousand miles away, we can't get in, we can't get that camaraderie or even do anything," he said.

He understands it's for the greater good of those who live there and even the employees themselves.

"I can't say enough for the caregivers in there, I know they have families of their own and they're doing everything they can but there's nothing that can replace the love of a family," Daugherty said.

Still, his heart is heavy and he hopes a change in protocol is coming sooner rather than later as time and health are a fragile thing.

"I have no problem putting on a hazmat suit and everything you want, not one problem whatsoever but we're really coming down to the call, is this how I'm going to remember my parents and this is how they're going to go out? Or do I have to break all the rules and pull them out of there and bring them home myself," he said.

For more information: /coronavirus-covid-19

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