Mere hours after updating their visitor guidelines, officials at the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance (CKHA) cancelled all but essential visits after it was discovered a staff member had contracted COVID-19.
Hospital officials said they are working with CK Public Health to take proper precautions and enact safety measures.
As a result, CKHA is only allowing limited visitation to essential visitors.
A visitor must check in to the nurses’ station prior to visiting.
All visitors must be actively screened prior to entering CKHA.
Essential visitors must wear a mask at all times while in the hospital. Visitors will then be required to wear any additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) required while visiting.
Hospital officials said there are no exceptions to this, and individuals who do not follow PPE requirements will be asked to leave the facility.
Until further notice, visitors are permitted only in the following situations:
An inpatient who is actively dying, as determined by the Most Responsible Physician (MRP), may have one visitor present at a time.
A small number of patients (e.g. very frail/elderly, patient with dementia, person who is non-verbal or severely disabled) require a support person or advocate to be present, whose absence may negatively impact the provision of safe care. In this case and at the direction of the clinical provider/team, this patient may be accompanied.
Patients 18 and under may be accompanied by one adult caregiver.
In the Emergency Department (ED): A patient who is at imminent risk of dying may have a loved one present with them during their ED stay; patients with cognitive or mobility difficulties may be accompanied by one person during their ED stay; and pediatric patients in the ED are permitted to be accompanied by one adult.
Women in active labour/postpartum may be accompanied by one adult visitor.
CKHA officials said exceptions will only be considered in “rare and truly exceptional circumstances.” If a family member wishes to seek an exception to the visitation policy, they should contact CKHA’s Patient Relations department.
Only essential items are to be delivered to patients in hospital, CKHA personnel said. This includes items such as eyeglasses, hearing aids, toothbrushes and hygiene items. Deliveries of non-essential items will not be accepted.