Visitors to nursing homes will be required to show a Covid vaccination certificate, a HSE vaccination record or another proof of immunity before entering the premises.

That is according to a new document published by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre.

The advice, outlined in the document entitled 'Normalising visiting in Long-Term Residential Care Facilities', will be implemented from Monday.

Among the key points listed about visiting long-term residential care facilities like nursing homes is the requirement of window visits to be allowed at all times.

It notes that the term "visitor" does not include Essential Service Providers, who provide healthcare, legal, financial, advocacy and regulatory services.

The document states that ESPs should be fully vaccinated (similar to healthcare workers), but recommends that they cannot be denied access.

In the definition of terms it also recommends that "important service providers" who help improve a resident's sense of self and wellbeing - like hairdressers and entertainers - should also be fully vaccinated.

The advocacy group Care Champions has called on the Government to clarify what, if any, consequences exist for public and private nursing homes that fail to adhere to the new visitation guidance from the HPSC.

It says that when families raise concerns about nursing homes not adhering to visitation guidance, ministers repeatedly advise them to communicate with individual nursing homes.

The group says this is "unacceptable".