May 23, 2003

Contact:
Bärbel Hatje
Communications Consultant, LHSC
519-685-8500, ext. 35947

SARS update: LHSC changes its visitor restrictions

(LONDON, Ontario) London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) has changed its visitor restrictions. The revision will allow an increase in authorized visitors entering LHSC in order to balance the needs of our patients and visitors while continuing to ensure appropriate infection control measures.

"While we have changed our visitor restrictions, we continue to monitor the SARS situation and will make changes as directed by the province. Our infection control measures, including restricted entrances to the hospital, remain in place," says, Margaret Nish, Executive Vice-President of Clinical Care and Academic Affairs. "In the process, we want to ensure that as the regional referral and trauma centre for all of southwestern Ontario, LHSC does not let down its guard against SARS and maintains thorough infection control. Limiting the number of visitors within the hospital is one way of doing that."

In essence, the new visitor restrictions increase the number of visitors for inpatient and surgery patients to two visitors per patient within visiting hours. The full details are printed below.

Visitor Restrictions

INPATIENTS
Patients are allowed two visitors per day during the following visiting hours:

Monday to Friday: 4 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Weekends & Holidays: 12 p.m. - 6 p.m.

One of the two visitors allowed must be the age of 14 or older. Patients will be asked to provide the names of two approved visitors each day.

SURGERY
Adults scheduled for surgery are allowed two visitors. For the remainder of the stay the above guidelines must be followed.

Children having surgery may be accompanied by two parents or legal guardians or designated caregivers, to be determined by the parents or legal guardians (no siblings).

OUTPATIENTS
Adult patients arriving for clinics, day procedures or diagnostic procedures are allowed an escort when additional assistance is needed as part of the patient's care.

LHSC asks that those who are driving patients to and from their appointments refrain from waiting inside the hospital. It is vital for LHSC to continue to limit the number of people inside the hospital in order to maintain appropriate infection control.

Children arriving for clinics, day procedures or diagnostics may be accompanied by two parents or legal guardians or designated caregivers, to be determined by the parents or legal guardians (no siblings).

EMERGENCY
Emergency Department patients are not allowed visitors. An exception will be made for children, patients that are critically ill, palliative patients, and pregnant women in labour as noted below.

VISITOR RESTRICTIONS FOR SPECIAL PATIENT GROUPS
Visiting hours for the following patient populations are not restricted to the inpatient visiting hours noted above.

Children: 2 parents or legal guardians or designated caregivers, to be determined by the parents or legal guardians (no siblings), per day.
Critically ill patients: 2 visitors per day
Palliative patients: 2 visitors per day
Women in labour: 2 persons per day

As a regional referral centre and trauma centre for Southwestern Ontario, our primary concern is protecting the health and safety of our patients. We thank you for your patience as we continue to work to protect patients, staff and the community from the spread of SARS.

For more information visit www.lhsc.on.ca or call the Community Information Line at 685-8500 ext. 50150.

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Last Updated June 5, 2007 | © 2007, LHSC, London Ontario Canada