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Visitation Policy

COVID-19 Visitation Restriction Policy

Updated Oct. 22, 2021

Per the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), DCH’s limited visitation policy remains in force. Compliance with the visitation restriction policy is required by all visitors, at all times.

Many physician offices in DCH medical office buildings are independent of DCH and have their own visitation rules. If you are coming for a doctor’s appointment, please contact the clinic’s office prior to arrival to verify their requirements.

Visitation regulations for long-term care facilities differ from hospital requirements. The visitation guidelines for Fayette Medical Center’s Long Term Care facility are updated as conditions change and can be found here https://www.dchsystem.com/locations/fayette-medical-center/long-term-care-covid-updates/.

Visitation restriction guidelines for other areas are outlined below. The following visitor restriction policy is effective at 12:01 a.m. on Oct. 25, and will remain in force until further notice.

Visitation Requirements for All

This section describes requirements for any approved support person. Support person limitations are outlined by category in the subsequent sections.

Unless otherwise noted, visitation hours are from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. From 9 p.m. to 8:30 a.m. each day, no new visitors will be allowed except for extenuating circumstances such as end-of-life events.

Patients cannot leave their care area to go outside to visit with others.

  • Unless otherwise noted, any support person allowed into an area is required to meet or comply with the following:
    • Each support person must check in and check out with Security.
    • Be at least 16 years old.
    • Wear a mask at all times.
    • Wear additional personal protective equipment in certain circumstances if deemed necessary by the clinical staff.
    • Agree to practice appropriate hand hygiene.
    • Wear a visitor badge during the entire visit.
    • Remain in the patient’s room or the assigned waiting room (where space for proper social distancing is available; otherwise, the visitor will be asked to leave until space becomes available) except for basic personal needs.
    • Be courteous and kind to the staff and others.
    • Follow all clinical staff instructions.

Where possible, calls or video chats should be used for situations such as visits or family/caregiver education.

If a patient condition changes (for better or worse and including a positive COVID-19 diagnosis), then the visitation restriction guidelines for the new situation will apply.

COVID-19 and PUI Patients

  • No support person will be allowed for any COVID-19 positive patients other than end-of-life events, palliative care and/or corresponding consultations.
    • In certain extenuating circumstances, one support person may be considered when the person’s presence may improve the physical care, safety and/or emotional well-being of the patient.

COVID-19 End of Life Events

  • A maximum of two support people may visit, per day, for end-of-life events, palliative care and/or corresponding consultations as long as sufficient personal protective equipment is available and used at all times during the visit.
    • Support people will be required to follow all clinical staff instructions related to the visit.

Non-COVID Inpatients

  • Each non-COVID-19 positive patient can have up to two support people per day (with exceptions noted below).

Non-COVID End-of-Life Events

  • For non-COVID-19 positive patients who are likely facing an end-life-event, palliative care and/or corresponding consultations, up to two support people may be allowed. If one person leaves, a third may enter. A maximum of three support people (two at a time) may visit, per day, for these situations.
    • Support people will be required to follow all clinical staff instructions related to the visit.

Inpatient Surgical/Procedural Guidance

  • Up to two support people may accompany a non-COVID positive patient to assist with entry into the hospital and registration, but cannot stay during the procedure.
  • When the procedure is complete, and a room has been assigned, then up to two support people may be allowed back into the patient’s room.

Outpatient Surgical/Procedural Guidance

  • Up to two support people may accompany a non-COVID positive patient to assist with entry into the hospital and registration, but cannot stay during the procedure.
  • When the procedure is complete, staff will call a designee for up to two support people to come in and be present for discharge instructions and pickup.
  • If a private room has been assigned, then up to two support people may be considered and allowed to stay in the room with the patient until discharge.

Outpatient Cancer Treatment

  • One support person per outpatient cancer treatment patient for the initial consultation, change in treatment and/or test results discussion only due to the compromised immune system of the patients.
  • One support person per outpatient cancer treatment patient for treatment (only if the patient is insufficiently healthy or not mobile enough to proceed without assistance; otherwise, no visitors).

Inpatient Rehab

  • Two support people per patient, per day.
  • Inpatient Rehab visitation hours are from 4:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  • Visitors must sign in at the nurse’s station.

NICU

  • Up to two support people at a time per NICU patient. A maximum of two support people may visit per day.
    • Each support person must have a patient identification band.
    • Support people for NICU patients are exempt from the general visitation hours.
    • To avoid overcrowding, NICU staff may need to limit the total number of people in the unit at any given time. Support people must comply with these restrictions if implemented.

Maternal Care

  • Up to two support people per patient, per day. A maximum of two support people may visit per day.
    • The support person must have a patient identification band.

Emergency Department

  • One support person may accompany a patient in the Emergency Department once the patient has been placed in a private room.
    • The support person must wait outside until the private room has been assigned and they been called by the staff with instructions on how to enter.
  • No support person will be allowed for any COVID-19 positive or PUI patients other than end-of-life events, palliative care and/or corresponding consultations.
    • In certain extenuating circumstances, one support person may be considered when the person’s presence may improve the physical care, safety and/or emotional well-being of the patient.
  • If approved, the support person(s) must remain in the patient’s room.
  • If the ED patient is admitted, then the support person will need to move his or her vehicle and go through the inpatient visitor check-in process (South Lobby entrance at DCH Regional Medical Center). The visitor will not be allowed to accompany the patient as he or she is transferred to an inpatient unit from the ED.

North Harbor

  • No support person is allowed. At this time visits must be conducted by phone