Utah (ABC4 News) – According to officials with Intermountain Healthcare, visitor guidelines have been reinstated as Utah’s COVID-19 cases have continued to rise.
Intermountain Healthcare officials say due to a rise in the number of COVID-19 cases, there is a higher rate of positive tests, and increased hospitalizations. Because of these health concerns, more restrictive visitor policies will be re-implemented at all Intermountain Healthcare hospitals and clinics in Utah and Idaho beginning Monday, June 29, at 7 a.m.
The new policies only allow visitors in specific circumstances. Special accommodations for patients who are children, mothers in labor, and adults who need assistance or are at the end of life will be made.
“We understand communicating with loved ones is an important part of a patient’s healing process. We encourage people to communicate electronically with patients through phone calls, video chats, or texting, which are great alternatives to help patients feel loved and connected,” said Shannon Phillips, MD, chief patient experience officer at Intermountain Healthcare. If patients don’t have access to technology or need assistance, our care teams can help provide devices or technical support.”
Intermountain Healthcare listed the following restrictions for visitors.
Hospitals and Emergency Rooms: ***No visitors will be allowed, except under the following circumstances:
- Patients younger than 18 may designate a maximum of two visitors throughout their stay, with a maximum of one visitor at a time.
- Patients who need an adult to keep them safe may designate a maximum of one healthy visitor throughout their stay.
- Mothers in labor may have a maximum of one designated visitor throughout their stay.
- Healthy newborns may only have both parents visit while in the hospital.
- For patients at the end of life without suspected or active COVID-19, a maximum of two visitors will be allowed at a time, with no more than four designated visitors total while in the hospital. These visitors must be older than 12 and must wear a mask or cloth face covering.
- For patients at end of life with suspected or active COVID-19, up to two total designated visitors will be allowed while in the hospital. These two designated visitors may not switch out with other individuals and must be older than 12. Specific protective equipment must be worn by visitors in this circumstance.
Intermountain asks people to please note a “designated visitor” may not switch with other individuals through the course of a hospital stay. For example, if the designated visitors for a patient younger than 18 are the mother and father, the father may not switch with a grandparent.
Intermountain Clinics and InstaCare Locations:
- Be in good health. Visitors with signs of illness or who have active COVID-19 or a pending COVID-19 test result will not be allowed.
- Complete a screening at the front entrance of the facility. This screening includes a short series of questions about symptoms and a temperature check performed by greeters at all facility entrances.
- Wash their hands or use alcohol sanitizer. We ask that this is done before and after entering or leaving our facilities and rooms to prevent the spread of viruses on high-touch areas.
- Maintain social distance from others while in the facility. This includes staying six feet away from other guests and avoiding gathering in waiting rooms, lobbies, or entrances.
- Wear appropriate protective equipment. All visitors must wear a face covering and are encouraged to bring their own cloth face coverings or masks. For some circumstances, masks and other protective equipment will be provided.