St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital Institutes Temporary Changes to Essential Visitor Policy

Published On: December 30, 2021

In an effort to protect the health and safety of patients, staff and physicians, the St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital (STEGH), has made changes to its Essential Visitor policy.

Effective 12:01 am on Friday, December 31, 2021, STEGH will implement temporary changes to further limit essential visits. This action is being taken out of an abundance of extreme caution for the safety of both patients and staff, given the surge of COVID-19 cases across the province and aligns with the approach being taken by other hospitals in the region.

Limited exceptions to the policy include:

  • Two caregivers for a patient who is palliative/actively dying/critically ill;
  • Two parents/guardians of an ill newborn, child or youth (18 or younger) who has been admitted (parents are required to alternate their visits and are encouraged to interchange as minimally as possible);
  • One caregiver in the Special Care Nursery in addition to “mom and baby”
  • One caregiver for a woman in labour;
  • One caregiver for a patient with dementia or cognitive impairment, a physical disability, language barrier, or visual impairment;
  • One caregiver is permitted to accompany a patient in the Emergency Department if the patient meets one of the above listed criteria.

Details are also posted on STEGH’s website.

STEGH remains committed to patient and family-centred care and will make every effort to ensure that the needs of patients and families are met while these temporary measures are in place. We will ensure the emotional wellbeing of patients, by encouraging alternative options to in-person visitation, including virtual visits.

“We want to thank our community for their understanding and support as COVID-19 directions continue to evolve,” says Karen Davies, President & CEO. “As a hospital, it is our priority and responsibility to keep our patients and staff safe.”

Protect yourselves and your families against COVID-19. Get vaccinated, wash your hands, wear a mask, limit gatherings, and stay home if you are feeling unwell.