WellSpan Visitor Policy Changes
Updated October 22, 2020
WellSpan Health has developed protocols to maximize the health and safety of our patients, visitors and staff from the spread of COVID-19. WellSpan Health facilities will permit one designated healthy support person throughout the duration of care for hospital inpatients, Emergency Department patients, and those patients at outpatient locations. A support person is defined as an individual who is essential to a patient’s physical, spiritual and emotional well-being. Visitation is currently limited at all WellSpan facilities. Visitation policies for patients on behavioral health units will be different and determined by those locations.
Face Covering (e.g. mask, scarf, bandana, etc.)
All patients, support persons and approved visitors over the age of two coming into our facilities must have a face covering (e.g. mask, scarf, bandana, etc.) regardless of COVID-19 status. Each person entering our facilities is encouraged to bring their own mask.
In accordance with Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health order dated June 9, 2020, exceptions will be made only for patients for whom masking would create a further health risk. If a healthy support person refuses to wear a mask, they will not be admitted into the facility unless they are the support person for a patient with a disability or the parent of a minor and for whom wearing a mask would create a further health risk.
When entering a WellSpan Health facility, patients and support persons are required to complete a health screening, which includes answering questions about their health related to COVID-19. Any support person who screens positive may not enter with the patient. If the patient screens positive, the patient will be directed to contact their primary care provider for guidance and care. Anyone with serious symptoms will be directed to the nearest Emergency Department.
- All inpatients may have one designated support person visit with them at a time who has gone through screening and is masked.
- Labor and Delivery, including Maternity, patients: One designated healthy partner/support person to stay throughout their admission and care. This person must be ≥ 18 years of age (unless they are the parent of the baby).
- Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Pediatric patients: Two healthy parents/guardians will be allowed in the unit at a time and they are approved for the entirety of the hospitalization.
- Emergency Department Visitation: One healthy support person is permitted and authorized for patients presenting to the ED for the entirety of the visit. Pediatric patients may have both parents but no other family children.
- Hospital Based Procedures, Surgery, Testing: One healthy support person is permitted during the same day/outpatient procedure/surgery/test, for post-procedure discussion and for assistance with discharge.
- End of Life: All end of life patients regardless of COVID-19 status who are admitted to any health care unit may have only two support persons allowed into the unit at a given time. A visit from clergy may be considered in these situations.
- COVID-19 or Patients Under Investigation for COVID-19: Patients with this diagnosis are unable to have visitors during their hospital stay or Emergency Department visit at this time.
- Behavioral Health unit visitation has specific requirements unique to that service.
Hospital Visitation Hours
In order to maximize the health and safety of our patients, visitors and staff from the spread of COVID-19, WellSpan hospitals may need to establish hours for patient visitation.
Please note the timeframes of patient visitation for the following hospitals*:
WelllSpan Surgery and Rehabilitation Hospital
10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
WellSpan York Hospital
7 a.m. – 8 p.m.
*Exceptions to visitation hours may exist for certain hospital units. WellSpan hospitals that are not listed do not currently have established patient visitation timeframes.
Volunteers, Third-Party Vendors, Contractors and Non-Employee Contracted Staff and Deliveries:
In addition to visitor restrictions, WellSpan Health is currently limiting entry to individuals deemed essential to provide patient care.
- At this time external clergy are not permitted.
- Volunteers are returning in some capacities but those involved in Pet Therapy are not yet.
- Only approved and screened third-party vendors are permitted.
- Non-employed contracted staff entering the building to work must follow employee screening.
- Deliveries of food and flowers to patients are to be delivered to designated entrances. Deliveries are accepted from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Hospital staff ordering food delivery must arrange for pick-up of the delivery at an exterior entrance, not in the hospital lobby.
- Food delivery to outpatient hospital locations must be to an outside entrance.