NEW YORK STATE (WSYR-TV) — While safety restrictions for nursing homes have been a big focus throughout the coronavirus pandemic in New York State, the same restrictions apply to assisted facilities, despite the big differences in population and COVID-19 data. 

Salon services are still not allowed in assisted living facilities, and now a recent survey shows 74% of facilities say their residents have left the premises to go get their hair done, exposing them to the general public, which they say is a much riskier option than on-site services with safety protocols in place proposed by the facilities. 

State assisted living advocates say residents need to get back to their routines, but cannot when they are clumped with nursing homes by the state.

“So there have been about 175 passings in assisted living and for nursing homes, there have 6,400. You’re talking about less than 3%,” said Lisa Newcomb, Executive Director of Empire State Association of Assisted Living.

The Empire State Association of Assisted Living is currently working with the New York State Department of Health to separate and differentiate policies for assisted living facilities and nursing homes.