JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA — On Thursday, a Twitter user posted a video clip that showed the Florida governor and presidential candidate overcome by emotion. The short video was from a roundtable discussion with health officials held in September 2020.
The topic for the discussion was the isolation practices imposed on elderly in nursing homes – a policy that was in effect early during the so-called pandemic, and that Ron DeSantis started easing up to finally rescind in the fall of 2020.
“From the beginning of this pandemic, there were so many unknowns. We have learned something new about this virus every single day,” Mary Mayhew, then AHCA Secretary, said – adding that Florida medical institutions had to “adjust to ever-changing guidance” from the CDC.
“We made that painful decision around visitation. The restriction on visitation is absolutely counter to everything we promote. The human touch is absolutely critical,” Mayhew said.
“Part of having a healthy society is understanding that… a human being seeks affection. That you have family members who… that many of the folks understand… that they have loved ones who are in the last stage of their life. They’re not demanding a medical miracle – they’re not having unrealistic expectations. They just would like to be able to say goodbye, or to hug somebody, so…” the governor says before he is visibly overtaken by emotion.
Governor DeSantis then started explaining the easing of the restrictions, allowing Floridians to see their relatives again and to be able to hug them.
“Can you imagine that… that you’re in these situations where you’re not… you’re not able to see the people that you love, and… So, it just… it just needed to get done. And believe me, if I… if I could’ve just snapped my fingers… We were discussing it in May and June,” DeSantis said about doing away with the isolation of the elderly.
Watch the full video here.