COVID-19 FAQs: When can I have visitors in the hospital?

Learn how the visitor limit affects hospital stays and clinic appointments

Hospital patient window decorated with hearts.

Sanford Health is changing its visitor restriction policy, effective June 26. Adult patients are allowed one visitor at hospitals and clinics across the health system, and children are allowed two visitors.

For hospitals, the one visitor per adult patient is welcome from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. All visitors will be screened according to current CDC guidelines, and are expected to wear a cloth or surgical mask at all times. This change in visitor policy does not apply to COVID-19 specific units or long-term care locations.

Pediatric and NICU patients are allowed two visitors (adult or minor). This can include parents, guardians or other support persons.

Similarly, for clinic visits and outpatient appointments, one visitor is allowed with each adult patient. The visitor is expected to wear a surgical or cloth mask at all times. NICU and pediatric patients are allowed two visitors during their appointment. This can include parents, guardians or other support persons.

If a visitor does not have a mask, the facility will provide one.

We’ve outlined a few specific situations below. If you have more questions, please call your health care provider or clinic before you visit.

Can I bring my partner or friend to prenatal appointments?

A woman may bring one visitor with her to clinic appointments such as a 20-week ultrasound. Both parties should wear a face mask into the clinic and for the duration of the appointment.

Who can go to pediatric appointments?

When a parent brings their child in for an appointment or procedure, both the parent and child must wear a mask while on hospital grounds. Because the child is the patient, one parent counts as one visitor. That parent or guardian can bring a partner, spouse or other child with them. They may switch with another parent or guardian, although it’s safest to keep this to a minimum.

Can I have visitors in the hospital?

An adult hospitalized for four days may have several visitors over the course of their stay, but only one at a time. It is recommended to keep the total number of visitors to a minimum. All visitors must wear a mask while on hospital grounds.

What about visitors to skilled nursing and assisted living facilities?

All long-term care locations are temporarily closed to all visitors until further notice to protect the health of our employees and residents who face the highest risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Friends and family are encouraged to communicate with loved ones remotely through phone calls, Facebook or video conferencing.

This story was originally published May 20, 2020. It was updated June 26, 2020, to reflect the new visitor policy.

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Posted In Coronavirus, Frequently Asked Questions

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