October 22, 2021 – St. John’s, NL: Eastern Health advises the public of the implementation of temporary visitor restrictions for hospital patients and long-term care and personal care home residents at all facilities and sites on the Burin Peninsula, due to an increase in COVID-19 cases and ongoing investigation in the area. Effective immediately, two designated visitors and a support person (if required) are permitted for inpatients in a hospital setting and residents of long-term care homes.
Visitation hours are determined by facility and visitors/support persons are advised to contact the patient’s/resident’s health-care team for further information. All support persons/visitors must check-in upon arrival to the facility and be screened prior to the visit. Visits will only proceed for individuals who meet the screening criteria. Visitors/support persons are advised that if they show any signs or symptoms of COVID-19, they should not enter a health-care or long-term care facility or personal care home. Instead, individuals are directed complete the COVID-19 self-assessment and testing referral tool or call 811.
In certain exceptional circumstances, inpatients and residents may be permitted one designated support person/caregiver for the duration of their stay while these restrictions are in place, consistent with Eastern Health’s Family Presence and General Visitation policy. A support person may be a relative, legal guardian, friend, or formal/informal caregiver who provides direct care to the client (e.g. feeding support, mobility, personal hygiene, cognitive stimulation, communication, and assistance in decision-making). If a patient/resident feels a support person/caregiver is required, they should discuss their request with their care-team.
- Hospital patients can identify two designated visitors and one support person, if required, who can visit separately once a day unless otherwise advised by the clinical care team.
- Long-term care and personal care home residents can identify two designated visitors and one support person, if required, who can visit separately once a day, or at the same time (if physical distancing requirements can be maintained). Visitors are advised to connect with the resident’s health-care team to discuss visitation hours. Virtual visitation can be arranged upon request.
- Out-patients and Emergency Department patients are asked to consider the necessity of bringing an additional person. Patients who can safely manage without assistance/support should proceed to an Eastern Health facility unaccompanied.
- Palliative care and end-of-life visitation should be discussed with the health-care team.
Eastern Health also reminds visitors that masks continue to be mandatory at all Eastern Health facilities, sites and clinics; during home visits from Eastern Health staff; as well as in congregate living facilities for seniors and within personal care homes and long-term care facilities. The provided mask must be worn throughout the duration of the visitor’s time in our hospitals and other health-care facilities, including while visiting patient/resident rooms. This is a necessary precaution to keep people safe while in our health-care facilities. Wearing masks is one of the key strategies in preventing the spread of infection, and is especially critical within health-care settings to protect patients, clients and residents as the COVID-19 pandemic evolves.
Visitor restrictions during the pandemic have been critically important to the safety of our residents, patients, staff and physicians. We would like to thank the public for their understanding and co-operation during this time.
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