Hospital visitation policies tightened
In compliance with the executive order issued by S.C. Gov. Henry McMaster’s calling for hospitals to eliminate patient visitation, MUSC Health and McLeod Health have enacted new visitation guidelines related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to the screening and hand hygiene protocols that were already in place, the following restrictions are now being enforced:
No visitors in the building unless the physician feels a patient is at the end of life. At that time, hospital officials will contact a family member, friend or other caregiver to be at the bedside. Exceptions may be made by hospital administration based on ongoing patient safety needs.
• Daily screening will continue to take place at designated hospital entrances.
• For pediatric patients, only one parent, legal guardian or caregiver will be permitted with their child.
• For pregnant mothers, one significant other will be permitted to enter the hospital or be at the mother’s bedside.
• A no visitor policy applying to employees, on or off duty, as well as community members.
• End-of-Life patients: A visitation exception can be made for the immediate family members to visit an end-of-life patient. A total of six visitors can be cleared for visitation. Only two may visit at a time. This exception must be cleared by the Patient Care Supervisor and McLeod Security.
• Emergency Department: No visitors will be allowed in the emergency department. A visitor may assist the patient into the lobby. Staff will go to get the patient. The visitor will not remain in the building.
The only exceptions are pediatric patient or a special needs decision maker. One visitor only, no one under 18 years of age
• Surgical/Procedural Patients: Patient may have one visitor accompany them to the hospital. The visitor may remain during surgery, but leave upon completion.
• Pediatric Patients: One designated visitor. Should be custodial parent. Designated visitor must be the same person for 24 hours.
• NICU/PICU – same as pediatric patients.
Exception to NICU/PICU – Custodial parent will be allowed to leave and return.
• Women’s Services Labor and Delivery: Patients may have the father/significant other as a visitor and a birthing coach (during the birth only).
• Cancer Center: Patient may have one visitor accompany them to the hospital. The visitor must exit the hospital. No visitors allowed in the waiting rooms.
HopeHealth officials stated the following in a press release dated March 19:
*“Hope Health is taking every effort to ensure the safety of our staff and patients. Our COVID-19 Strategy Team meets daily to respond to the changing status of disease spread and adjust HopeHealth guidelines as needed according to CDC recommendations. At this time, all HopeHealth facilities remain open for our patients to address their health needs, however, some appointments are being rescheduled as needed.”
Patients visiting HopeHealth for appointments are asked to limit accompanying guests to one individual who is in general good health, not exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms, and is preferably not a senior. For pediatric patients, please do not bring siblings to the appointment.