South County Hospital enacts “no visitor” policy

Published 03/12/2020

To help protect patients, staff, and the community, South County Hospital is enacting a “no visitor” policy on its adult inpatient units starting at 5 a.m. on Thursday, March 12.

In collaboration with the Rhode Island Department of Health and other health systems in Rhode Island, this policy is being enacted to minimize person-to-person contact during this time of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) spread in Rhode Island and across the world.

Exceptions to the policy include:

  • The Women and Newborn Care Unit will allow for one birthing partner to accompany expectant mothers.
  • Under the current COVID-19 restrictions, ONLY patients will be allowed inside the Emergency Department. No visitors are allowed unless you are a caregiver for a critically-ill patient.

  • In some circumstances – like in cases of end-of-life care or the need for a medical decision maker to be present -- exceptions to this policy may be made.

“We recognize that this policy may create inconvenience for patients and families,” said Aaron Robinson, President and CEO of South County Health. “It is our responsibility to aggressively prevent the transmission of COVID-19, especially in a hospital setting where many individuals are elderly or have compromised immune systems.”

South County Health leadership is meeting several times daily to share the latest COVID-19 updates and strategies to prevent and respond to the spread of the virus. Hospital leadership is also communicating regularly with colleagues in government and health care as the state collectively pursues the best course of action to decrease the risk of transmission.