Some Texas hospitals reinstate 'no visitors' policy as COVID-19 cases surge

Some central Texas hospitals have reinstated policies prohibiting visitors in an attempt to reduce virus transmission as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations surge across the state, according to KXAN.

A spokesperson for Austin-based Ascension Seton, Dallas-based Baylor Scott & White Health, and Austin-based St. David's Healthcare confirmed that all three healthcare systems had restricted visitors.

"While we understand the importance of having the support of loved ones during a hospital visit or stay, we must continue to prioritize the health and safety of our patients and caregivers during this unprecedented pandemic," the joint statement reads, as cited by KXAN. "We encourage support persons to use alternate methods of communication to stay in contact with loved ones, such as phone calls, video chats or texting."

Exceptions include laboring and post-partum patients, patients with disabilities or impairments, elderly patients, patients in the neonatal ICU and pediatric units, patients requiring surgery and patients requiring end-of-life care.

Many hospitals and medical practices across the state recently adjusted visitation policies as cases began to spike, said Diana Fite, MD, president of the Texas Medical Association.

"We're worried that as it's increasing, we don't need the extra exposure from visitors," Dr. Fite told KXAN. "The medical community is definitely concerned."

More articles on infection control:
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Resistant meningococcal strain circulating US, CDC warns
American College of Physicians: Best practice tips when using masks to prevent COVID-19

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