Hamilton hospitals are starting to relax some visitor restrictions


Published August 6, 2020 at 5:02 pm

Hamilton Hospitals are relaxing some of the visitor policies they had in place to protect staff and patients from COVID-19.

Hamilton Hospitals are relaxing some of the visitor policies they had in place to protect staff and patients from COVID-19.

Earlier this week, both Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS), and St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton (SJHH) announced that hospital inpatients will now be allowed to have up to two visitors but not at the same.

The overall message the hospitals are hoping to send to residents is that hospitals are a safe place to be, but there are some precautions that they are taking to protect safety.

At HHS hospitals, two family members/caregivers, who are over the age of 18, may visit during visiting hours (9 a.m. to 8 p.m.) every day. However, an HHS press release says, only one person will be permitted at the patient’s bedside at a time.

SJHH has a similar policy in place in that inpatients can have two designated visitors per day, however, not at the same time. The two individuals designated will be the only people able to visit the inpatient.

“The changes implemented today for patients staying overnight in our hospital acknowledge the important role family members and care partners have in supporting the wellbeing of our patients,” SJHH says in a press release.

“As part of our staged approach to reintroducing visitors, the changes are also balanced with the need to keep everyone in our hospital safe.”

At SJHH, mothers giving birth or who are staying overnight with a newborn on the Mother-Baby Unit, they are allowed one support person is permitted at a time and one parent or caregiver is permitted at a time with a baby admitted to the Special Care Nursery.

There are exceptions to these rules on compassionate grounds and can be made upon request by a patient’s medical team.

Patients accessing clinical care are asked to attend alone but again, some exceptions could be made with the consent of the clinical team.

Visitors are urged to connect with a patient’s care team before visiting to ensure proper protocols remain in place.

Visitors to Hamilton hospitals will still undergo a health screening prior to entry. SJHH allows visitors to do this online prior to their visit. Details for that can be found here.

Hamilton hospitals were forced to restrict visitor access back in March after COVID-19 after local cases of COVID-19 started to turn up. Since then, patients have been restricted to one or no visitors, depending on the situation.

For more information on HHS visitor policies, visit here. For more information on SJHH visitor policies, that can be found here.

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