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OHSU limits visitors as COVID-19 surge pushes hospitals to their limit

All visitors are expected to be vaccinated or have a negative COVID-19 test taken within the last 72 hours.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) is limiting how many people can visit patients at OHSU, Doernbecher Children's Hospital and all OHSU outpatient clinics as a surge of COVID-19 patients puts stress on Oregon's hospitals. 

OHSU said it expects visitors to be vaccinated or have had a negative COVID-19 test taken within the last 72 hours, but is not requiring proof. 

The restrictions take effect Thursday, Aug. 19 and will last until the current wave of cases subsides, OHSU said. 

In a news release, OHSU said "the decision to restrict visitors reflects the gravity of the current phase of the pandemic." 

There are some exceptions for pediatrics, labor and delivery patients, and end of life.

The revised visitor policy includes:

  • No visitors for adult patients, including oncology, day procedures or surgeries, the emergency department and ambulatory clinics
  • No visitors for patients with COVID-19 and patients under investigation for COVID-19
  • One visitor for postpartum labor and delivery patients, and actively laboring patients who have been diagnosed with COVID-19
  • One visitor for pediatric patients, including neonatal intensive care, pediatric patients with COVID-19, day procedures or surgeries, oncology, the emergency department and ambulatory clinics
  • Two visitors for adult patients near death, actively laboring patients without a COVID-19 diagnosis, and adult and pediatric patients with COVID-19 who are near death

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OHSU clarified that people with disabilities can have a support person at their bedside around the clock, which is in accordance with state law. They will be restricted to three people in a 24-hour period, and only one visitor may be at a patient's bedside at a time.

Visitors will be required to wear a mask, follow hand-washing and social distancing protocols and stay in the patient's room during visits. 

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