Riverwood updates hospital visitor restrictions

Given the steady decline of COVID-19 cases in Aitkin County, Riverwood Healthcare Center has made some updates to its visitor restrictions policy effective Feb. 11.

For those hospitalized patients, including the ICU, one adult visitor may be allowed from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Labor and Delivery patients may have one visitor age 18 or older with no time restrictions. Surgical patients who are hospitalized following surgery will be able to have one visitor after admission to their room.

For those patients requiring emergency care, one family member may be allowed into the ER depending on the individual circumstances, including end-of-life care.

Allowing visitors or not is always subject to nurse or provider discretion, as there are times when it is not feasible or appropriate to have a visitor in the room or department. All other areas of the Riverwood clinic and hospital facilities will remain closed to visitors at this time.

Those who are sick or displaying symptoms of COVID-19 are not allowed to visit patients. Everyone is required to wear a mask when entering a Riverwood facility. Exceptions will be made for those with breathing difficulties and children under age 5.

“Precaution steps are still needed to prevent exposure to Covid illness for visitors and patients,” said Dr. David Taylor, Riverwood’s chief medical officer. “But we are happy to loosen visitor restrictions, which we know are difficult for both our patients and their family members. As always, our nursing staff may make compassionate exceptions for visitors to critically ill or end-of-life patients.”

Riverwood continues to offer a virtual option for face-to-face visits with hospital patients via Zoom on iPads dedicated to patient use. The nursing staff can advise how to set up a Zoom visit.

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