Mohawk Valley Health System Updated Visitation Policy

Effective Monday, November 7, 2022

Visitor Guidelines – Inpatient Hospital Units

  • Visiting hours for inpatient hospital units are from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week.
  • Quiet time is observed between the hours of 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. During this time, visitors are encouraged to give patients the opportunity to rest.
  • Patients can have only two visitors at a time.
  • Patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments including dementia may designate one support person to remain with them through their hospitalization. An additional visitor may also be with the patient during hospital-designated visiting hours.
  • Pediatric patients may have two designated support persons with them at all times.
  • Patients in imminent end-of-life situations may have two designated support persons with them.
  • Visitors will be screened (temperature check and asked about symptoms). Visitors will be denied entry if they report significant COVID-19 exposure or symptoms during the prior 10 days or have a temperature equal to or greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit;
  • Visitors will be given a mask to wear for their entire visit, including in the patient’s room.
    • Visitors will be asked to leave the facility if they fail to or refuse to wear an appropriate mask.
  • Visitors must maintain social distancing of six feet – even in the patient room.
  • A visitor must remain in the patient room unless otherwise directed by the clinical staff.
  • The new visitation policy now includes visitation for COVID-19 patients or persons under investigation for COVID-19. However, the visitor(s) shall comply with the following:
    • Visitors will be instructed on the proper use of all required Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for entry to the patient’s room.
    • Full PPE will be donned prior to entry to the patient’s room and removed upon exit from the patient’s room.
    • The visitor(s) will be instructed to perform appropriate hand hygiene when exiting the patient’s room.
    • Visitors who do not adhere to these safety measures will be asked to leave the facility.
  • Visiting patients outside of the designated hours on any unit shall be at the discretion the Hospital Supervisor and shall be evaluated individually based on the needs of the patient.
  • A patient who wishes a visit by a child under the age of 12 shall obtain the approval of the Hospital Supervisor. The child shall be accompanied by a responsible adult (who is not the patient) and accompany the child at all times throughout the visit. It is preferred that children visit in the lobby or patient lounge with adult supervision.
  • The hospital retains the right to request identification of all individuals within the buildings and to ascertain their purpose for being on the premises. Individuals who do not have a need to be on the property, or who pose a threat to patients, staff, other visitors etc., shall be asked to leave. Security and the appropriate police department shall assist as needed, and all EMTALA and CMS Regulations shall be followed prior to dismissing person(s) from the premises.
  • The Hospital Supervisor shall be informed if concerns arise regarding visitation, which shall not be conducive to the patient’s care and treatment. The Hospital Supervisor shall obtain the support of Security, the Administrator On Call and local authorities when warranted.
  • All visitors must wear a visitor name badge.
  • All visitors must be older than 12 years of age except for previously documented exceptions.

 

Visitor/Support Person Guidelines – Emergency Department

  • Ambulatory ED patients may have two support persons with them through the intake process, into the treatment room.
  • The support person(s) will be screened (temperature check and asked about symptoms). The support person(s) will be denied entry if they report significant COVID-19 exposure or symptoms during the prior 10 days or have a temperature equal to or greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The support person(s) will be given an appropriate mask to wear for their entire visit and will be instructed in appropriate hand hygiene. If they refuse to wear an appropriate mask, they will be asked to leave the facility.
  • The support person(s) will wear a visitor name badge.
  • Support person(s) must maintain social distancing of six feet – even in the patient room.

Visitor/Support Person Guidelines – Maternity

LABOR AND DELIVERY

  • Two support persons, including a doula if requested, may accompany the patient throughout labor, delivery, and the postpartum period, including recovery, until discharge to home. (These support persons must wear a green bracelet and there is no switching out). The support persons can be the patient’s spouse, partner, sibling, parent, or other persons over the age of 16 of their choice. These two designated support persons may be with the patient outside of the hospital’s regular visiting hour blocks.
  • After delivery, until transferred to Mother and Baby Unit, two additional persons (e.g., grandparents) may visit. There is no changing of the designated visitors. Only four (4) total visitors are allowed in the mother’s room at one time. Children under 16 are not allowed to visit at this time.
  • The laboring woman’s support persons shall be in good health and shall not be a person under investigation (PUI) or COVID-19 positive.
  • The support persons will be screened (temperature check and asked about symptoms). Screening includes a temperature check every 12 hours by nursing staff and screening questions.
    • The support person shall be denied entry if they report significant COVID-19 exposure or symptoms during the prior 10 days or have a temperature equal to or greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The support persons will be given an appropriate mask to wear for their entire stay and will be instructed in appropriate hand hygiene.
    • Masks shall be removed for bathing or eating only.
    • Scrupulous hand washing and hygiene is a must.
    • The support person may not leave the building and return repeatedly. One occurrence is permitted to obtain necessary items to remain in the hospital, as a support person, continuously throughout the patient’s admission.
  • If the laboring woman is either a person under investigation or COVID-19 positive, the support person shall comply with the following:
    • The support person may leave the hospital once to gather personal items, then return. Once they return, they will not be able to leave again and come back.
    • The support person will be instructed on the proper use of all required Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for entry to the patient’s room.
    • Full PPE will be donned prior to entry to the patient’s room and doffed upon exit from the patient’s room.
    • The support person will be instructed to perform appropriate hand hygiene when exiting the patient’s room.
    • Masks may be removed for eating and showering providing that the support person is at least six feet away from the patient while their mask is off.
  • The support person(s) shall be asked to leave the facility if they fail to or refuse to wear an appropriate mask.
  • The labor support person(s) shall be allowed to use the patient’s bathroom/shower.

 

MOTHER AND BABY UNIT

  • Visiting hours are from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. The time period of 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. is designated quiet time for new mothers to rest.
  • Only four total visitors are allowed in the mother’s room at one time.
  • Children under 16 are not allowed to visit at this time.
  • During these visiting hours, the two support people from Labor and Delivery and an additional four visitors may be in the Unit.
  • Only one support person can stay overnight with the patient.
  • The support persons will be screened (temperature check and asked about symptoms). Screening includes a temperature check every 12 hours by nursing staff and screening questions.
    • The support person will be denied entry if they report significant COVID-19 exposure or symptoms during the prior 10 days or have a temperature equal to or greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The support persons will be given an appropriate mask to wear for their entire stay and will be instructed in appropriate hand hygiene.
    • Masks can be removed for bathing or eating only.
    • Scrupulous hand washing and hygiene is a must.
  • The support person(s) will be asked to leave the facility if they fail to or refuse to wear an appropriate mask.
  • The labor support person(s) will be allowed to use the patient’s bathroom/shower.

 

SPECIAL CARE NURSERY

  • Visitation is open for parents at all times, except for the following times 6:30 a.m. to 7 a.m., and 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Parent shall designate two support persons (over 16 years old) at the time of admission who are permitted to visit the newborn with the parent presents.
  • The support persons must be in good health and must not be a person under investigation (PUI) or COVID-19 positive.
  • Only two total individuals are permitted at the bedside of a newborn, one at a time.
  • No additional visitors are permitted at this time.

 

Visitor/Support Person Guidelines – Outpatient Procedures and Medical Appointments

OUTPATIENT PROCEDURES

  • Patients undergoing same day procedures or surgeries may be accompanied to the facility by a companion and that companion may remain with the patient through the initial intake process. The support person/companion may rejoin the patient for the discharge process.
  • After intake, support persons/companions are encouraged to wait at home for the patient or they may wait in a designated visitor area.
    • If directed to a designated area within the hospital, the support person/companion shall be screened and be required to wear an appropriate mask.
    • The support person/companion will be directed not to leave the designated visitor area.
    • A support person/companion shall be asked to leave if they refuse to wear an appropriate mask or do not adhere to the appropriate safety measures, including staying in the designated visitor area.
  • MVHS has granted exceptions from this policy for:
    • Ultrasound for pregnant women – partner may accompany
    • OB Care Center – partner may accompany
    • Patients needing special assistance (frail, wheelchair) – support person may accompany
  • Special circumstances in the outpatient surgery and procedural area include:
    • Pediatric patients – two support persons may accompany the patient throughout their time at the hospital except when otherwise directed by medical personnel.
    • Patients for whom a support person has been determined to be essential to the care of the patient (medically necessary), including patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments including dementia – one support person may accompany the patient throughout their visit except when otherwise directed by medical personnel.

 

MEDICAL APPOINTMENTS

  • Patients attending a medical appointment may be accompanied by a companion.
  • The support person shall be screened (temperature check and asked about symptoms). The support person shall be denied entry if they report significant COVID-19 exposure or symptoms during the prior 10 days or have a temperature equal to or greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The support person shall be given an appropriate mask to wear for their entire visit and shall be instructed in appropriate hand hygiene. If they refuse to wear an appropriate mask, they shall be asked to leave the facility.

Visitors should note the following important information:

Our healthcare professionals are working very hard to care for your family member or friend. We ask that you treat them with respect, kindness and compassion – just as they are doing for your loved one. If you behave otherwise – that is, if you are rude, threatening or attempt to bully our staff members – you will be asked to leave our organization and escorted off the property by MVHS Security and/or Law Enforcement. The safety of our staff members and our patients is our first priority. We will act accordingly if they are threatened in any way. Thank you.