Phelps Health tightens visitor policy due to COVID-19

Due to a recent surge in COVID-19 cases in Phelps County, Phelps Health announced on Wednesday, August 19 it would be changing its visitor policy to protect patients and staff. The facility is suspending all visitors at its locations until further notice, with some exceptions.

            “In an effort to continue protecting our patients, staff, and communities from the spread of COVID-19, Phelps Health is temporarily suspending all visitors at all of our locations beginning Thursday, August 20,” the facility announced.

            Until further notice, no visitors will be allowed at Phelps Health Hospital or clinics with the following exceptions:

  • Patients receiving end of life care in the ICU and other areas.
  • Patients under the age of 18. One parent or guardian will be allowed in with the minor.
  • Obstetrics/Labor and Delivery. One support person designated for patient’s entire stay.
  • Intellectually disabled patients. One support person or caregiver will be allowed.
  • Prisoners. One law enforcement officer can be present.

            Family members or support persons with an ICU patient will not be allowed to stay inside the hospital when not with the patient as the waiting rooms will be closed. If a patient is able, staff will assist with video calls on the patient’s personal device. A family member, designated by the patient, will receive updates by ICU staff throughout the day and will notify the family member of any change in the patient’s condition. The designated family member may call the ICU for updates every four hours from 7 p.m. until 8 a.m.

            Family members can elect to rotate the support person allowed bedside for end-of-life patients and will also have health screenings upon entry. No two visitors are allowed in the ICU at the same time. Family members will also not be allowed to remain in the hospital when not with the patient as the waiting rooms are closed.

            All visiting individuals must be adults over the age of 18 and will be required to complete a health screening, including checking for fever, respiratory symptoms, and symptoms associated with COVID-19. Individuals will be required to wear a mask, sanitize hands, and practice social distancing once inside Phelps Health and throughout the patient’s stay.

            “These additional restrictions will help us continue to remain open, safe and ready to serve you,” Phelps Health said in the announcement. “We apologize for any inconvenience and we thank you for your cooperation.”