Visiting Hours & Policies

Central Vermont Medical Center recognizes the value of family and friends in the healing process. Learn about our visiting hours, policies, and how to contact patients.

Visitation Policy Updated 11/23/2020

CVMC recognizes that family members and loved ones are valued members of the healthcare team and play a key role in supporting the wellbeing of our patients. As we seek to limit further the spread of Covid-19 during this new surge, we are implementing temporary changes to our welcoming policy to protect the health and well-being of our patients and families, our staff, and our community.

For All:

No visitors permitted until further notice with very limited exceptions.

  • Everyone entering CVMC facilities:
    • Must follow current Vermont state guidelines for quarantine. Those who have been in close contact with a person with Covid-19 must not visit our facilities. 
    • Will be screened for fever and Covid-19 symptoms prior to entry. Those with symptoms compatible with Covid-19 will not be allowed to visit. 
    • Is required to wear a mask that covers the nose and mouth for the entire time they are in the building. Those not able or willing to wear a mask for the duration of their time in the building will not be permitted entry or allowed to remain within our facilities. Commercial masks with outflow vents, bandanas and neck gaiters are not permitted. A mask will be provided if you do not have an acceptable face covering.

Additionally:

  • ADA service animals are permitted. All others animals, including previously approved therapy dogs/support animals, or service animals in training are not allowed at this time.
  • In some circumstances, one “essential support person” may be permitted entry as a visitor, as in the case of a patient with communication needs (such as persons who are deaf or who do not understand/speak English), cognitive impairment, or a disability requiring assistance to access care.
  • Patient and Family Communication: We will make every attempt to accommodate, for the patients and their families, the ability to talk or visualize, via the use of electronic devices, (patient or hospital owned) as necessary, so patients/families stay connected to their loved ones during this time of social distancing.

Inpatient/Acute Care and Emergency Department:

No visitors for Covid-19 positive patients or persons under investigation (PUIs).

  • Patients in End-of-Life Care: Visitation for patients will be managed by their care team. Two designated support people are permitted. 
    • Designated support persons should stay in the patient’s room when possible. Exiting and re-entering is highly discouraged.
    • Support person designation cannot be transferred to anyone else.
    • Support persons shall be identified by the units as a “designated visitor” in Meditech. Support persons must log in with a screener as a visitor and are screened additionally for travel and residency.
  • End-of-Life Planning: Families members involved in end-of-life planning may schedule a meeting with the Palliative Care Team. If this meeting is in person, they must log in with a screener as a visitor.
  • Clergy: All denominations are supported by our CVMC Chaplain program. Chaplains may arrange a virtual visit with the patient’s own clergy upon request. Clergy may schedule in-person visits with a CVMC Chaplain or through the Palliative Care Program. Clergy must log as in with a screener as a visitor. 
  • Hospice Care: Hospice nurses, chaplains, and social workers are allowed to enter daily to visit their patients. All hospice care team members must log in with a screener as a visitor.
  • Labor and Delivery: One designated support person allowed per admission. This person must remain with the patient on the unit and may stay the night. The designated support person must have their mask on when they leave the patient room and when hospital staff enter the patient room. Hospital contracted doulas are permitted as an additional support person. If an infant is required to stay after the mother is discharged, visitation should follow the pediatric guideline.
  • Pediatrics: Parents are not considered ‘visitors’ but are rather considered essential support persons. Two parents/guardians, or one parent/guardian and visitor, may accompany pediatric patients for their entire stay.
  • Inpatient Psychiatry: No visitors until further notice.
  • Emergency Department: No visitors until further notice with limited exceptions.
    • Exception for pediatric patients: Two parents/guardians, or one parent/guardian and visitor are permitted. 
    • One visitor for patients for whom a support person has been determined to be essential to the care of the patient (medically necessary).
    • Exception for end-of-life care: Two designated support people are permitted. 
    • All exceptions must sign the Emergency Department visitor log book.  

Other Exceptions: The Chief Medical Officer and Chief Nursing Officer, in collaboration with CVMC’s infectious disease team, will review other exceptions as needed.

Outpatient:

Family/friends are not permitted to accompany adult patients to outpatient visits.

Exceptions: There are limited exceptions for patients who require support and assistance to access their appointment as outlined below:

  • Pediatric Clinics: One parent or guardian permitted to accompany pediatric patients.
  • Medical Practices, Rehabilitation Therapy, Surgical Services, Diagnostic Imaging, Laboratory, and ExpressCare: One support person is permitted in rare circumstances for a patient who requires assistance to access care (such as for a patient with a mobility or communication needs, for persons who are deaf or who do not understand/speak English, or have a disability or cognitive impairment). These exceptions should be determined in advance of the visit. 
  • Distressing news and end-of-life planning: One support person may be permitted to accompany a patient in anticipation of the following limited circumstances:
    • New diagnosis of a terminal illness.
    • Patient’s lack of response to treatment, which shifts the conversation towards end-of-life planning.
    • Change in the course of treatment that could have significantly negative outcomes, including end-of-life.
  • Prenatal Ultrasounds: Obstetrics patients are permitted to bring one support person for their initial first trimester ultrasound and for their 20-week anatomy ultrasound appointments.
  • Prenatal Testing in Women and Children’s Unit: No support persons for prenatal testing at this time. Please call the Women and Children’s Unit for exceptions.
  • Patients who would benefit from other forms of support during a visit (such as having a family member ‘present’ to listen, participate in the discussion, etc.) are encouraged to include support persons via telephone or video-conferencing technology.
     

General Notes:

  • This policy will be modified on a case-by-case basis for unique circumstances.
  • We will make every effort to support patient and family interaction by deploying the use of technology whenever possible.
  • Everyone is asked to sanitize their hands upon entry/exit from the building, entry/exit from the unit or clinic, and entry/exit from patient rooms.
  • Employees are restricted from visiting patients either on or off-duty unless they are one of the two designated visitors for patients at end of life.
  • Cafeteria: Open to staff only. 
  • Gift Shop: No outside customers, only staff on duty and patients already in the building may visit the gift shop.
  • Patients presenting to pay bills: Bill payment in person not allowed at this time. 
  • Credit union customers: Customers to the credit union must pass the health screening to enter the building. Credit union employees will escort customers in and out of the building.
  • Vendors: Only vendors who are required to provide a medically necessary service, repair, or delivery will be allowed access to CVMC facilities and must pass the health screening.
  • Any visitor who does not comply with this policy will be asked to leave the premises.