Lehigh Valley, Pa.,
12:58 PM

LVHN Resumes Hospital Visitation Limitations

With the health and safety of patients, staff and the community in mind, as positive cases and hospitalizations increase due to coronavirus (COVID-19), Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) is re-implementing its “No Visitation, No Access Policy” for all hospitals and outpatient facilities. This includes Lehigh Valley Physician Group (LVPG) offices. The policy was first implemented in the spring during the early weeks of the pandemic and later eased as cases began to decline.

The “No Visitation, No Access Policy” takes effect for all LVHN hospitals and outpatient sites as of Tuesday, Nov. 17, at 7 a.m.

LVHN leadership is committed to doing everything possible to ensure families of the most gravely ill patients they can visit their loved one in a safe manner. Personal protective equipment (PPE) will be provided to these visitors to help ensure the safest possible visit. The health network also will provide the technology to allow virtual visits for those who aren’t able to visit patients in the hospital.

In our hospitals and inpatient facilities, no visitors are permitted except under these special circumstances:

  • Visitation of a gravely ill patient in the ICU, including those with COVID-19

  • Parent visitation of a child in a pediatric ICU or neonatal ICU

  • One coach or partner per patient on labor and delivery unit

  • One visitor at a time for patients in inpatient hospice unit

  • One parent/guardian at a time for pediatric patients

  • One visitor to accompany patients for hospital discharge

  • One visitor for patients undergoing same-day surgeries and procedures

  • One visitor per patient in the emergency department

  • No child under age 12 is permitted to visit in the hospital.

  • Reasonable accommodations for pediatric visits will be made, provided any sibling visitors age 12 or above are in good health.

  • For all outpatient appointments, one visitor is permitted to accompany a patient for an outpatient appointment, procedure, same-day surgery or LVPG office visit.

  • The person accompanying a patient must be in good health and is subject to a health screening, if necessary.

LVHN understands these revisions to the visitation policy might present difficulties for some patients, family members and friends, and we are sympathetic to those concerns. At the same time, we must be responsible to the communities we serve and do what is best to protect everyone. We urge those who might be impacted to please cooperate with our physicians, nurses and staff as they help us continue to fight COVID-19.

A united effort in following this policy can help us safely navigate this latest surge and hopefully assist our plans to return to normalized visitation practices as quickly as possible. The safety of our patients, visitors and staff is our No. 1 priority. People can help prevent the spread by:

  • Wearing a mask in public

  • Staying 6 feet apart

  • Washing hands regularly

  • Staying home when sick

We still have a long way to go in the fight against COVID-19. We will prevail by working together to stop the spread.

About LVHN

LVHN includes eight hospital campuses, three in Allentown, one in Bethlehem, one in East Stroudsburg, one in Hazleton and two in Pottsville, Pa.; Coordinated Health, which includes two hospital campuses, nearly two dozen multispecialty locations including ambulatory surgery centers and orthopedic injury centers in northeastern Pennsylvania and western New Jersey; 26 health centers; numerous primary and specialty care physician practices; 20 ExpressCARE locations including the area’s only Children’s ExpressCARE; pharmacy, imaging, home health, rehabilitation and lab services; and preferred provider services through Valley Preferred. Specialty care includes: trauma care for adults and children, burn care at the Regional Burn Center; kidney and pancreas transplants; perinatal/neonatal, cardiac, cancer, orthopedics, neurology, complex neurosurgery capabilities including national certification as a Comprehensive Stroke Center, and robotic surgery in 10 specialties. Lehigh Valley Cancer Institute, Lehigh Valley Heart Institute and Lehigh Valley Institute for Surgical Excellence physicians provide the most advanced treatments. Lehigh Valley Cancer Institute is a member of the Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) Cancer Alliance, an initiative that helps community providers improve the quality of cancer care and offers access to MSK clinical trials. Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital, the community’s only children’s hospital, provides care in more than 30 specialties and general pediatrics. Lehigh Valley Hospital–Cedar Crest is ranked as the region’s No.1 hospital for seven straight years and has been recognized among Pennsylvania’s top six hospitals for seven consecutive years by U.S. News & World Report. Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)–Cedar Crest, LVH–17th Street and LVH–Muhlenberg are the region’s only Magnet® hospitals for nursing excellence. Additional information is available by visiting LVHN.org or following us on Facebook , Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.