Starting Monday, Aug. 2, Sarasota Memorial Hospital will reactivate its “no visitors” policy with limited exceptions. The temporary change is intended to reduce the number of people in the hospital and protect patients and staff from rising cases of Covid-19 on the Suncoast.
“We know how important visitor support is to our patients, but these new restrictions are for everyone’s protection,” says chief medical officer Dr. James Fiorica.
There will be limited exceptions to the hospital's new policy—including for extraordinary circumstances such as end-of-life care. The hospital will allow limited support persons for patients in the labor and delivery/mother-baby units and for children admitted to the pediatric unit or neonatal intensive care units. A support person also may be permitted to wait in a designated area while patients undergo surgery and certain types of procedures or therapy.
For those who cannot visit, SMH staff will be available to help connect families and friends via video calling apps such as Skype or FaceTime. The hospital will provide patients with iPads and technical assistance if needed.