Visitor Policy Update in Response to COVID-19

November 05, 2020

In response to the resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the Merrimack Valley, Lawrence General Hospital is re-implementing an updated visitor policy, effective Monday, November 9, 2020.

To limit potential COVID-19 exposure and protect the health of patients and families we serve, in-person patient visitation is generally prohibited and strongly discouraged at this time. Virtual and telephone visitation is encouraged in place of in-person visits during the pandemic.

Certain exemptions include patients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), who will be allowed one adult visitor for no longer than 30 minutes. Additionally, patients who are receiving end-of-life care and test negative for COVID-19, will be allowed two designated adult visitors for 60-minute increments. In both situations these visitors will remain the same designated individual(s) for the duration of the patient’s stay. Any other permitted adult visits are limited to 30 minutes per day for one designated visitor for the duration of the patient’s admission. Visitors must leave the hospital immediately after their visit is complete.

Laboring patients may have one support person throughout the course of their stay. Certain exceptions may be made for those under the age of 18 who are designated parents or legal guardians. Otherwise, visitors under the age of 18 are not permitted.

Hospital visiting hours are now 12 pm to 2 pm and 4 pm to 6 pm, seven days a week. Entrance for visitors to Lawrence General's main campus is limited to the Main Lobby.

All visitors must be healthy and are required to wear a facemask while in the hospital. Hospital entrances are staffed by security and clinical staff to screen each person entering the hospital for COVID-19. No one will be permitted to visit a patient if they have signs or symptoms including fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, unusual fatigue, chills, body aches, vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, abdominal pain or loss of taste or smell.  Additionally, no visitor will be permitted if they had exposure to a person with known COVID-19 within the last 14 days, or if they are receiving treatment and/or in quarantine for COVID-19 or if they have tested positive for COVID-19 with the last three weeks.

Family and friends who wish to connect with a hospitalized patient are asked to call or video chat the patient as one way to stay connected while limiting risk of COVID-19 transmission. Physicians and nurses at Lawrence General Hospital continue working with patients and their families to optimize communication and have technology available to assist with video calls. Patient care teams continue coordinating with Lawrence General interpreters and chaplain staff to meet the emotional and spiritual needs of patients and family members.

We understand these temporary changes may impose an inconvenience to some families, but it’s an important step to keep everyone as safe and healthy as possible. We appreciate your help protecting our patients, families and the greater community.

Additional information can be found online at: