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Hamilton hospitals have started to allow visitors for inpatients again

St. Joseph’s Healthcare Services (SJHH) and Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS) released a joint statement that outlines how visitors will be allowed back into hospitals starting June 24th

Hamilton hospitals have been closed to visitors for three months amid COVID-19 and have begun a staged and gradual approach to allowing family members and caregivers back into facilities. 

The outlined changes at SJHH allow for a limited number of visitors every other day between 9 am and 9 pm. St. Joe’s is only allowing one family member or caregiver per inpatient to visit during the allocated hours.

However, visitors will be limited to the inpatient area and will not be permitted in the emergency department, psychiatric emergency service, urgent care centre, and outpatient clinics. 

Arrangements can be made in advance for support workers to accompany a visitor with advance notice. 

At HHS, they are allowing one family member or caregiver with up to two family members or caregivers permitted for alternating visits on designated days. 

Visitors will need to pass COVID-19 screening and will be required to wear a face covering during their visit. Family members and caregivers will only be permitted in the inpatient’s room between 9 am and 7:30 pm.

The cafeteria will be open for visitors to purchase food. They will also be able to bring their own food providing it is individually packed and not shared. 

SJHH and HHS both have exceptions in regard to the number of visitors such as the amount of people present for a woman in labour, end-of-life care, and when special support is required. 

Visitors are required to use public washrooms and not the washrooms in a patient’s room.

Allowing a controlled number of visitors is another step as hospitals continue to restart services within their facilities. 

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