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MetroHealth adjusts visitation policy amid coronavirus concerns

MetroHealth Medical Center is the latest to announce changes to its operation.

CLEVELAND — Several area businesses and establishments are taking action as the effort to stop the spread of coronavirus continues. 

MetroHealth Medical Center is the latest to announce changes to its operations. 

Effective 7 a.m. Thursday, March 18, the hospital is suspending all visitation to adult hospital patients. 

Visitors will only be allowed if they meet one of the following criteria. 

  • Obstetric patients may have one partner and one birth support person accompany them.
  • Patients who are under the age of 18 may be visited or accompanies by up to two parents or guardians.
  • For the Nursery/Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, birth parent plus one significant other.
  • Patients who are at the end-of-life may have up to two visitors.
  • Patients with altered mental status, cognitive impairment, developmental delays, or disruptive behavior, where a family member is key to their care, may have one visitor.
  • Patients who require a home caregiver to be trained.
  • Patients undergoing surgery or procedures may have one visitor, who must leave as soon as possible after the procedure.
  • Patients who have an appointment at a MetroHealth clinic, laboratory, radiology or are visiting the Emergency Department may have one person with them.

This the second set of preventive measure implemented by the hospital. Just last week, it was ordered that all visitors must be at least 14 years of age and will be screened before entering patient areas. Anyone sick, coughing or showing other signs of illness will be asked to leave.  

Depending a patient's health condition, additional restrictions my be implemented. 

The hospital also provided a list of additional rules for its various locations; see that information below. 

Inpatient Locations

  • Up to two visitors per adult patient are allowed.
  • Up to two visitors per pediatric patient are allowed in the pediatric units. Parents, guardians or family care partners only.
  • Up to two visitors per patient are allowed in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Parents or support persons only.
  • Up to two visitors are permitted for obstetric patients. Partners and grandparents only.

Emergency Departments

  • Visitors are prohibited inside adult patient areas in the Emergency Department. For patients requiring assistance, one visitor may be permitted.
  • One parent or caregiver per pediatric patient is allowed.

Outpatient Locations/Physician Practices/Express Care

  • Patients are asked to come to appointments alone if possible. One person is allowed to accompany each patient to an appointment on an as-needed basis.

Nursing Home and Rehabilitation

  • Visitors are prohibited in nursing home and rehabilitation patient areas. For patients with a deteriorating clinical status, visitors may be permitted with appropriate screening.

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced on Wednesday that the first community spread case of coronavirus (COVID-19) has been found in Ohio.

The Stark County man, in his mid-50s, has no travel history outside of the United States and has had no contact with any other person who has tested positive for the coronavirus. Ohio's total of positive coronavirus cases is now at four.

"Community spread is a game-changer," DeWine said. "You're going to see us taking more aggressive actions now. Please know that we're doing this to protect Ohioans and protect our healthcare system."

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