Visitation at Lifespan hospitals can resume

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — As state health officials say the COVID-19 situation in Rhode Island is improving, they announced a major ease on visitation restrictions at hospitals and long-term care facilities.

Visitors at Lifespan hospitals — Rhode Island Hospital, Hasbro Children’s Hospital, Miriam, Bradley, and Newport hospitals — will be allowed to return but on a limited basis.

Visitation was halted at those hospitals in November based on guidance from the Health Department in the interest of keeping sick patients as safe as possible.

The only exception was at Hasbro, where pediatric patients were allowed two parents of caregivers for the duration of the hospital stay, with one parent or caregiver staying overnight. This doesn’t change with the easing of restrictions.

At Rhode Island and Newport hospitals, two visitors may enter together, but at Miriam is only allowing one visitor to enter at a time, unless one visitor requires an escort.

For patients receiving end-of-life care, up to two visitors will be able to visit for 30 minutes. Additional visitors may enter after the original visitors exit, but always for 30 minutes at a time.

All visitors will be screened for symptoms for potential exposure to COVID-19 at the hospital doors, must present a photo ID, be masked at all times, and may not carry in any food or drink.

Patients arriving to the Emergency Room are not allowed to be accompanied by anyone.

Below are the visitation hours for each hospital:

  • Rhode Island Hospital:
    • General visiting hours: 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. 
    • Behavioral Health Unit: 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Hasbro Children’s Hospital: Read these guidelines before visiting
  • The Miriam Hospital: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. 
  • Newport Hospital:
    • Medical/Surgical and ICU: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. 
    • Vanderbilt Inpatient Unit: 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Behavioral Health Unit: 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Maternity services will allow for a birthing partner only. 

As for Care New England hospitals, a spokesperson said Friday the hospital group “is aware of the ask to lift visitor restrictions and is carefully considering how this will affect each of our operating units, with the unique needs of patients and staff of each location.”

Care New England will announce any changes on the visitation restrictions section of their website, according to the spokesperson.

The Department of Health also announced visitors will now be allowed at nursing homes and assisted living facilities if the facility has not had any COVID-19 cases in the last 14 days.

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