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.
Effective today, June 24th, we are welcoming limited visitors to inpatient units. Family members, loved ones & all care partners are essential to the wellbeing of our patients. For more info on who can visit & visiting guidelines, please go to: https://t.co/sUaJfItC3q pic.twitter.com/1wPAjJz8PJ
— St. Joe's Hamilton (@STJOESHAMILTON) June 24, 2020
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.
We know visits with family/caregivers are important to the well-being of patients. We're implementing a staged approach to reintroducing visitors, while taking special precautions to keep our patients, caregivers and staff safe.
— Hamilton Health Sciences (@HamHealthSci) June 24, 2020
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.