WellSpan Announces Restrictions on Hospital Visitors

Effective Thursday, March 19, the Wellspan health system has made the following access changes:

  • Prohibiting all visitation, with certain clinical exceptions (noted below)
  • Suspending all volunteer activities
  • Allowing on-site visits only from approved and screened third-party vendors
  • Restricting deliveries of food, flowers only if they can be left with staff at the main entrances outside hospital entry Monday-Friday 8-4p.m. (Staff ordering food delivery must prepare to pick up from delivery at exterior entrance, not in hospital lobby.)

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These measures are effective at Wellspan’s eight hospitals, including the Gettysburg Hospital.

Visitors are not able at this time to visit hospital inpatient areas. Limited exceptions to this include:

  • Obstetric patients may have one partner and/or one birth support person, accompanying them throughout their admission and care. (Only one designated partner will be allowed in the Labor or patient room at a time.)
  • Nursery and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) patients’ visitors will be limited to parents or legal guardians (a total of 2, no other guests or siblings) with no obvious signs of illness or travel. Only one of the identified parents or guardians will be allowed in the NICU at a time.
  • Patients who are nearing the end-of-life may have one visitor in unit or room at a time. Families are asked to not have large numbers of family at the hospital in waiting areas.
  • Minor patients under age 18 may have one visitor at a time, to be only parent or guardian.
  • Inpatients undergoing surgery or procedures may have one visitor on the day of procedure who must leave the hospital as soon as possible after the post procedure or surgery visit.
  • Patients who have an appointment at a hospital-based infusion room, as well as those visiting the Emergency Department, may have one person accompany them and if in ER, will likely not be in the core ER patient rooms.
  • Clergy will only be permitted to visit inpatients who are nearing end of life situations. Eucharistic Ministers will not be able to visit for communion at this time.
  • If any patient on the exception list is being tested or treated for COVID-19, they may not have visitors.

No one under age 18 (except if that minor is the parent of a patient) is permitted to visit WellSpan hospitals, including in waiting areas.

All visitors in the excepted categories will be screened at designated entrances before being issued a visitor badge each time they visit.

Outpatient Appointments on Hospital Campuses:

For all outpatient appointments:

  • One visitor will be permitted to accompany a patient to facilitate care or treatment such as an ambulatory visit, procedure or same-day surgery. However, patients and visitors must leave the hospital as soon as possible after the procedure or surgery and will be permitted in waiting areas only.
  • Children under the age of 18 are not permitted to visit or accompany the patient under any circumstances.
  • Health screening procedures at designated entrances will be required in circumstances where a visitor is allowed by exceptions noted
  • Please speak with a member of the staff for more information.

All visitors or approved vendors must be screened for symptoms of the COVID-19 disease at our hospital entrances. Only two entrances at each hospital are now available for entry during assigned hours.