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Visiting Alice Hyde

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COVID-19 Policy Update: Alice Hyde Welcoming Policy

Effective Date: 6/2/21

Within the UVM Health Network-Alice Hyde Medical Center (AHMC), we recognize that family members and loved ones are valued members of the healthcare team and play a key role in supporting the wellbeing of our patients. As we seek to limit further the spread of COVID-19 during this new surge, our network is implementing temporary changes to our welcoming policy to protect the health and well-being of our patients and families, our staff, and our community.

Patient and Family Communication:
We will make every attempt to accommodate, for the patients and their families, the ability to talk or visualize, via the use of electronic devices, (patient or hospital owned) as necessary, so patients/families stay connected to their loved one’s during this time of social distancing. 

For All:

Visitation is permitted at this time on a limited basis following NY State Department of Health (DOH) guidelines.

Everyone allowed to enter AHMC healthcare facilities:

  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Must follow current New York State Guidelines for quarantine. Those who meet criteria for quarantine due to exposure to COVID-19 must not visit our facilities.
  • Will be screened for a fever and COVID-19 symptoms prior to entry. Those with symptoms compatible with COVID-19 will not be allowed to visit.
  • Is required to wear a mask that covers the nose and mouth for the entire time they are in the building. While alone in a private patient room the patient and their visitor(s) may choose to have close contact without wearing a mask.  Both visitor(s) and patient will be required to wear a mask when any Health Care Personnel enter the room. The Centers for Disease Control encourages the use of well-fitting mask regardless of vaccination status while in the presence of immunocompromised individuals.  This applies to all scenarios below. Those not willing to wear a mask will not be permitted entry or allowed to remain within our facilities. Commercial masks with outflow vents, gaiters, and bandanas are not permitted. A mask will be provided if you do not have an acceptable face covering. Anyone seeking emergent medical care must be allowed to do so.
  • Only ADA service animals are permitted. All others animals, including previously approved therapy dogs/support animals, or service animals in training are not allowed at this time.
  • In some circumstances, one “essential support person” may be permitted entry as a visitor, as in the case of a patient with communication needs (such as persons who are deaf or who do not understand/speak English), cognitive impairment, or a disability requiring assistance to access care.

Inpatient/Acute Care and Emergency Department:

Adult inpatient units: Two support persons that can pass the pre-screening process for entry are allowed to visit during visitation hours.  Visitation hours will be held daily between 12pm-2pm and 5pm-7pm. We encourage limiting the number of support persons that visit daily but do allow support persons to switch out during the visitation hours, however only two persons are permitted at a time.

  • COVID Positive/Persons under investigation (PUI) or Quarantine patients: One support person that can pass the pre-screening process and is fully vaccinated (defined as: more than 14 days and within 90 days from 2nd dose in a two dose series; or more than 14 days and within 90 days of a one dose vaccine) is permitted during normal visitation hours per day.
  • Full COVID-19 PPE is required by Visitor(s), to include mask.
  • Patients in End-of-Life Care: Two designated support persons that can pass the pre-screening process may be present with patients (including COVID/PUI/Quarantine) for whom death is expected during this hospitalization without restriction on hours.
    • Designated family members/support persons must stay in the patient’s room. Other support persons may switch out with the two designated members during normal visitation hours; however only two persons may be in the room at any time, all others must immediately leave the building. Frequent exchanges are discouraged.
    • Clergy: A virtual or in person visit with the patient’s own clergy may occur upon request with Unit/ Department Leadership. Clergy must sign in with screener as a visitor.
  • Goal and Care Planning for end-of-life: Family members involved in end-of-life planning are to pre-schedule a meeting with the Palliative Care Team or Provider/Unit Leadership. If this meeting is in-person, the two designated individuals may attend, must pre-screen through the checkpoint and sign in as a visitor then leave at the conclusion of the meeting. It is strongly encouraged to have meetings via telephone or video-conference when possible.
  • Hospice Care: Hospice nurses and social workers are allowed to enter daily to visit their patients. All Hospice Care team members must log in with a screener as a visitor.
  • Labor and Delivery: Two designated support people that can pass the pre-screening process are allowed on birthing units, extending through the post-partum stay on the mother-baby unit. One support person may stay the night. The designated support person must wear their mask whenever they leave the patient’s room or when hospital staff enter the patient’s room. Trained doulas are permitted as an additional support person. If an infant is required to stay after the mother is discharged, visitation should follow the pediatric guideline.

Pediatrics: Parents are not considered ‘visitors’ but are rather considered essential support persons. Two parents/guardians may accompany a pediatric patient for their entire stay.

Emergency Department: One support person that can pass the pre-screening process is welcome at the bedside without restriction to hours.

  • There is no visitation in the ED for patients with:
    • COVID/PUI/Quarantine
    • Intoxication
    • Seeking crisis evaluation

  • Two designated parents/guardians for pediatric patients. Patients for whom a support person has been determined to be essential to the care of the patient (medically necessary) is permitted.
  • Two designated support people for patients in end of life care.
  • All visitors/support persons must sign in through the AHMC north entrance near the Emergency Department in the visitor log and pass the pre-screening process.
Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF): Resident visitation is from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. daily. Two visitors are permitted to visit at one time. Separate Department of Health regulatory requirements apply.
 

Process for Exceptions to Inpatient/Acute Care and Emergency Department Policies:

  • Any additional exception to this policy can only be made by the physician and nurse manager/nursing supervisor of the unit impacted. If the care team cannot reach consensus with regard to limited exceptions, the AOC on evenings, nights and weekends, will be the final decision maker in all cases.
  • For patients meeting an exception to the restriction on visitation, their identified support person(s) should be documented in the patient’s record. Units should identify patients who have a support person permitted (based upon one of the listed exceptions) and provide that information to the information desk at the start of each day.
  • Support persons who meet these exceptions will be screened upon entrance to the building before being allowed to visit. Those with symptoms compatible with COVID-19 or have an identified risk based on screening questions will not be allowed to enter. All persons will be required to wear an appropriate mask while in the building.
  • All support persons allowed to visit are required to remain in the patient room during the duration of their visit. Family members/support persons are permitted to leave and re-enter the building but must be rescreened upon each entry. Frequent exchanges of support persons is highly discouraged. All visitors should limit traffic in hallways and avoid waiting rooms, cafeteria or lobby before, after or between visits.
     

Outpatient Clinics:

Adult outpatient clinics: One companion who can pass the pre-screening process and is 18 years or older, may accompany the patient. All companions must wear an appropriate mask while in the waiting room and in the presence of a HCP (Health Care Professional).

Pediatrics: Two parents or support persons that can pass the pre-screening process should accompany pediatric patients. The designated parent/guardian remains the same throughout the visit.

Surgical Services:

  • For ambulatory/ same day procedures: Patients undergoing same day procedures from 7:30am - 4pm may be accompanied by a support person.  The support person may remain in a hospital designated waiting area until patient is discharged at the hospital’s discretion and as capacity allows based on social distancing. These support persons must be able to pass the screening process and must be 18 years or older.  Designated support person will be required to wear an approved mask while in the building.
  • For those patients being admitted to the hospital following a procedure: The support person(s) can remain with the patient through the initial intake process and then the support person(s) is/are required to follow the visitation guidelines as outlined for adult inpatient units.  Visitation hours will be held daily between 12pm - 2pm and 5pm - 7pm.
  • For Pediatric patients: two parents/guardians should accompany a child under the age of 18 years old. Once in the facility the pediatric support person(s) must remain in the patient’s room throughout the visit except when directed by hospital staff (aerosol-generating procedures or other incidents which would require support person to exit the room).

Diagnostic Imaging and Laboratory Services: One support person over the age of 18 is permitted to accompany the patient to their visit. One parent/guardian may accompany pediatric patients.

Patients who would benefit from additional forms of support during a visit (such as having a family member ‘present’ to listen, participate in the discussion, etc.) are encouraged to include support persons via telephone or video-conferencing technology.

Any exceptions to outpatient guidelines can only be made by the department leadership.

General Notes:

  • All visitors will be asked to clean their hands upon entry and exit from any unit, patient room, or clinic and upon entry and exit from the building.
  • The Department Manager/Nursing Supervisor will be called to respond to any family members/visitors who present significant safety concerns, including unwillingness to mask or comply with social distancing requirements, or refusing to leave when asked on the basis of these concerns.
  • Visitation rules apply equally to employees who wish to visit friends or family regardless of whether they are on- or off-duty.
  • Vendors and partners in financial and professional service firms shall be permitted if they are able to pass the pre-screening process.
  • Cafeteria/Ground Floor Dining Room: all support persons allowed to visit are strongly encouraged to remain in the patient room or designated procedure area during the duration of their visit, to limit traffic in hallways and avoid congregating in waiting rooms, cafeterias and lobbies before, after, or between visits where social distancing practices cannot be maintained.  The cafeteria is open with limited seating indoors, with additional seating available outdoors.
  • Any AHMC employee may enter the facility with her/his ID badge in hand on off-hours, to conduct work-related business such as necessary business at Human Resources or other similar activities. This is limited only to the employee and does not extend to friends or family.
  • Being an employee does not extend to visiting a friend or family member receiving care at AHMC. Employees must follow the same visitation process as the community.
  • This policy will be modified on a case-by-case basis for unique and/or extenuating circumstances.

Tobacco, Drug & Alcohol and Firearm Policies

  • Tobacco Use Policy: Alice Hyde is a tobacco-free institution. Medical Center policy prohibits any tobacco use on the Medical Center grounds. If you would like help to quit smoking, please ask a nurse for assistance.
  • Drug & Alcohol Use: Alcohol beverages and illegal drugs are prohibited on the Medical Center grounds.
  • Firearms: Firearms or other dangerous weapons are not permitted within the facility except by law enforcement.

Amenities

Free WiFi: Choose the AHMC-Guest Network

  1. Through your wireless network settings, choose AHMC-Guest Network.
  2. Open your browser and follow the on-screen instructions for logging in.

Note: Different computing devices will have similar features, but may look different than the image shown.

ATM: The ATM is located on the Main Floor across from the Gift Shop

Gift Shop: The Gift Shop, located on the main floor next to the Park Street Café, is temporarily closed.

Parking

Handicap Parking: Handicap parking is available off Fourth Street near the Nursing Home entrance and Emergency Room parking lot.