Essentia Health Eases Visitor Restrictions

(Fargo, ND) -- Amid a slowdown in the spread of COVID-19 across the region, Essentia Health is updating its visitor policy.

Beginning Tuesday, February 9th, one adult visitor per patient per day will be allowed in all clinics and hospitals, including emergency departments. Previously, visitors only were allowed for special circumstances. However, this change does not affect Essentia's long-term care facilities.

There are variances to the policy as well, they include:

  • In pediatric units, two caregivers are permitted per patient per day.
  • In neonatal intensive care units, two caregivers are permitted per day.
  • In emergency departments, two caregivers are permitted for pediatric patients.
  • In birthing centers, one adult visitor is permitted to visit. The birth partner is permitted at all times and is not considered a visitor. A certified doula will be allowed during labor.
  • People under the age of 18 may visit an immediate family member who is dying when they are escorted by an adult.

For adult inpatient COVID-19 patients, no visitors are allowed except for end-of-life situations, when additional visitors may be admitted at the discretion of hospital leadership and the patient’s primary physician. Chaplains are available to patients and families for support, ritual and prayer.

The provider also notes that they continue to require all staff, patients and visitors to wear a mask that covers their mouth and nose. All approved visitors will be screened for COVID and will not be permitted if symptomatic.