While ensuring patients are cared for in a safe and healthy environment is our highest priority, we also recognize that being alone for hospital stays and some clinic appointments can be difficult. Sanford Health is implementing a new visitor policy in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that is intended to minimize the spread of COVID-19 while also reducing feelings of isolation.
Medical Centers, Hospitals and Clinics
New visitor policy, effective May 20, 2020:
- One visitor per patient during visiting hours (8 a.m. - 8 p.m. daily) for all areas. Some facilities may have a slightly different policy, please call ahead to confirm. No visitors are permitted in COVID-19 units.
- All visitors will be screened according to current guidelines.
- All visitors must wear a face mask (cloth or surgical) at all times.
- For end of life care, visitors will be allowed at the discretion of the facility and then must follow all visitor guidelines.
- Patients are allowed to bring one visitor with them for clinic or outpatient appointments.
- Visitors must wear a face mask (cloth or surgical) at all times. If a visitor does not have a face mask, one will be provided.
- For hospitalized pediatric and neonatal patients:
- Each patient will be allowed up to two visitors per day (adult or minor) per patient. This can include parents, guardians or other support persons.
- Directors can make exceptions on a case-by-case basis.
Long-Term Care Facilities
What this means in our skilled nursing and assisted living facilities:
- All locations are temporarily closed to all visitors until further notice to protect the health of our employees and residents who face the highest risk of illness.
- Friends and family are encouraged to communicate with loved ones remotely through phone calls, Facebook or video conferencing.
Preparing For Your Appointment
We’re taking every precaution to keep our patients safe before, during and after their in-person appointments. And, by taking a few simple steps, you can also play an important role in your own safety and the safety of those around you. Together, we can help slow the spread.
For your upcoming appointment, please:
- Contact your doctor’s office if you’re experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. Symptoms include fever, cough or shortness of breath.
- Wear a face mask to your appointment. We strongly encourage you to bring your own mask. If you don’t have one, we will provide one for you.
- Honor our visitor restrictions policy. This precaution helps keep you, our community and employees safe. Please review our visitor restrictions (see above) prior to your appointment.
To learn more about COVID-19 and the steps you can take to stay healthy, explore our COVID-19 resources.
Visitor Policy Promotes a Safer Environment at Sanford
One visitor per patient limits chances of spreading COVID-19.
“It’s another area and another group of individuals that are likely to be vulnerable,” Dr. Suttle said. “They’re already sick. Their immune systems could be compromised.”
Even if you are not sick, you could be a carrier, Dr. Suttle said. And as there are no treatments or vaccines for COVID-19, visitor restrictions and other social distancing measures are in place to help stop its spread.
An alternate lab sample collection site for provider-ordered COVID-19 is in place in Bemidji. The location is only for patients with a provider order for a COVID-19 test. This site is not for “drive through” access to testing and individuals without a provider order will be turned away.
To receive the order, patients must meet all of the CDC requirements for COVID-19 and have an order from a Sanford provider to be screened.
For more information and testing questions, call (218) 333-5000.
This is the most up-to-date information on closures. If you have an appointment please assume it is as scheduled unless you hear otherwise. The following Sanford locations are closed until further notice to slow the spread of COVID-19:
Sanford Health News