DANVILLE – Time to ease up on the tight COVID-19 restrictions at Geisinger…Two people can now visit patients, and a childbirth assistant or coach can now accompany expectant mothers.
In a release Thursday, Geisinger says for most inpatients, two designated visitors can see the patient twice a day from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 3 to 6 p.m. for two hours each time period. Only the same two individuals are allowed.
A certified doula, or childbirth assistant and coach, is permitted to accompany a delivering mother, along with the mother’s support person. They will be screened before entering Geisinger facilities , are required to wear a mask and follow other protocols. If the doula tests positive for COVID-19, they may continue to support the patient virtually.
Geisinger says while the visitation rules are easing somewhat, family and friends are still encouraged to find alternative ways of visiting when possible. You can read more about the new guidelines below:
Additional visitation updates are as follows:
- All inpatients on acute psychiatric units (one designated visitor during visiting hours specific to the unit)
- Patients who are medically unstable (two designated visitors)
- Patients who are at the end of life but not COVID-positive or under investigation for COVID (two visitors)
- Patients undergoing surgery or procedures (one single-time visitor immediately after the procedure)
- Delivering mothers (one support person, plus a certified doula as part of the care team)
- Patients who are minors and those with limited decisional capacity (up to two parents or guardians)
- Patients who have altered mental status, an intellectual, developmental or cognitive disability or a communication barrier (two visitors)
- Patients with disruptive behavior, where a family member is key to their care (one visitor)
- ED patients (one designated visitor)
Approved visitors are subject to the following guidelines:
- Be 18 years of age or older and in good health
- Bring a form of identification
- Not have symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, recent loss of taste or smell or flu-like illness suggestive of COVID-19
- Not have active COVID-19 infection
- Be symptom-free for at least 14 days if they previously had active COVID-19 infection
- Complete health screening, including a temperature check, at the entrance before entry
- Must bring and wear their own masks at all times while in the facility
- Respect social distancing guidelines of 6 feet from all others
- Wash hands with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer before entering and after leaving a patient’s room
- Use the same entrance for entry into and exit from the hospital.
- Identify themselves and stay in designated areas (not travel throughout the facility)
Patients who have an appointment at a Geisinger clinic, laboratory or radiology may have one person accompany them, if necessary.
To find out more information about how Geisinger is safely resuming services and opening facilities, visit Geisinger.org/safe.