A New Mexico judge this week decided in favor of 78-year-old Gary Hein, who sued the state for keeping him apart from his wife, who currently lives in a nursing home, during the coronavirus pandemic, according to local reports.
The New Mexico Health Department must revise a provision enacted in March allowing nursing homes to make their own rules regarding visitor bans, State District Judge Matthew Wilson ordered Monday after hearing Hein’s case, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported.
“Loss of familial association for even minimal amounts of time constitutes irreparable injury,” Wilson’s ruling states, according to the outlet. “Nothing, such as video conferencing, is a substitute for in-person, physical contact with a loved one.”
The public health order regarding visitation must be revised in consideration of the constitutional rights of residents and families, he ruled. The New Mexico Department of Health did not immediately respond to