FAYETTEVILLE – August 17, 2021 – Due to changes in the Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus and the continuing high spread of cases in the community, Cape Fear Valley Health announces changes to the current visitation policy, which will begin Wednesday, Aug. 18. Starting Wednesday, the health system will be the limiting hours of visitation to between 4 and 8 p.m. and restricting the number of allowed visitors to one per day per patient. Visitors will no longer be allowed for COVID-19 positive patients.
Starting Wednesday, hospital cafeterias will also be closed to non-employees for in-person dining. Patient visitors and care companions may get food to take back to the patient’s room.
“Our hospitals are seeing tremendous growth in the number of COVID patients, and the numbers are growing at a rapid speed,” said Cape Fear Valley Chief Operations Officer Daniel Weatherly. “As we continue to experience more of this growth, we may look at stricter visitation policies in the future.”
Cape Fear Valley Medical Center inpatients, Cape Fear Valley Rehabilitation Center patients, Bladen County Hospital and Hoke Hospital patients may have no more than one visitor from 4 to 8 p.m. Visitors must be at least 16 years old. One overnight visitor is allowed for patients unless restricted as mentioned below, and that overnight visitor will count as the day’s one allowed visitor until the next 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. window opens. Clergy visitors will be counted as the patient’s one daily visitor.
Family and friends of patients are strongly encouraged to consider virtual visitation options such as video and phone calls. Assistance with phone or video calls may be arranged through the patient’s nurses’ station.
Visitors and patients in all Cape Fear Valley Health facilities and clinics are required to properly wear a mask at all times, with the exception of the HealthPlex facility, which only requires masks for visitors if they have not been fully vaccinated. Masks must remain on at all times, even in patients’ rooms, or the visitor will be asked to leave. Neck gaiters are not permitted. This mask policy will be strictly enforced.
All visitors will be screened with a brief verbal questionnaire and a temperature scan before being allowed entry. Those who refuse to answer the questions or who have a temperature above 100.3 Fahrenheit will be denied entry.
The health system has restrictions in certain parts of the medical center and other locations, as follows:
- Surgery patients will be allowed one visitor in the pre-op area, who may also wait in the surgical waiting room if arriving with the patient. The visitor is also allowed in Post-Anesthesia Care Unit if the patient is waiting to be admitted to the hospital. Once a surgery patient has been admitted, one visitor can go with the patient to their room between the hours of 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. At no time can a surgery patient have more than one visitor per day.
- Inpatients (non-COVID) awaiting surgery may have one visitor during visiting hours. The visitor may stay with the patient overnight and remain until the patient is taken to surgery.
- Highsmith-Rainey Specialty Hospital surgical patients may have one support person, who may wait in the lobby during the procedure.
- In the Emergency Department, visitors will not be allowed EXCEPT one care companion when the patient is placed in a treatment room in situations where the patient is not able to provide an accurate history or they are not their own care giver.
- Labor and Delivery patients are allowed only one designated support person, who must be at least 16 years old. No other visitors are allowed. A doula is not allowed unless it is the one support person in the room. Support persons are not allowed to switch with other people, and they cannot leave and return.
- In the Family Centered Care Unit, patients may have only one overnight support person who stays the entire time with the patient and cannot come and go or be changed out with another person. No other visitors are allowed. In the Family Centered Care Nursery (FCCN) only two banded visitors are allowed, and they must have their names identified at the security desk. FCCN visitors can visit at any time, but there is no space to allow for overnight stays.
- Pediatrics and the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit will allow one overnight parent or guardian at a time, and only one additional visitor from 4 to 8 p.m., as long as there are only two visitors in the room at a time. All visitors to Pediatric units must be 18 or older. The person who stays overnight is not allowed to come and go.
- In the Pediatric ED, only one parent or legal guardian may be present, and only one person may come past the waiting room with the child for triage. Once a Pediatric ED patient is in a treatment room, the second parent or guardian may join them.
- In the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, only two banded visitors are allowed and they must have their names identified at the secretary desk. They can visit at any time, but there is no space to allow for overnight stays.
- Oncology and Oncology clinics will allow one visitor at a time, with the exception of the chemotherapy area, where space constraints and immunocompromised patients do not allow for visitation.
- Outpatient clinics and Fayetteville Ambulatory Surgical Center will allow no more than one visitor per patient.
- Cape Fear Valley Behavioral Health Care will allow patients one visitor Mondays through Fridays, from 7-9 p.m. On the weekends, they may have one visitor per day from either 2-5 p.m. or 7-9 p.m. Once visitors leave the facility, they will not be permitted to return that same day.
- Long-Term Acute Care (LTAC) patients at Highsmith-Rainey Specialty Hospital are allowed one visitor per day from 4 to 8 p.m., but due to the high vulnerability of that hospital’s patient population, all visitors must be able to show proof of vaccination.
- Non-COVID End of Life patients who are actively passing are allowed up to four visitors with two visitors at a time. COVID patients at End of Life are allowed a one (1) time visit for 2 immediate family members only with a maximum time of two (2) hours. “Actively passing” describes anticipated death in 24 hours or less. Comfort care patients are not given extra visitors until they enter into End of Life and “actively passing” stage.
- COVID-19 patients will be not allowed any visitors.