Visitor restrictions in place at Powell Valley Healthcare

Posted 9/7/21

In response to rising rates of COVID cases, Powell Valley Healthcare placed temporary restrictions on visitation, in line with guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control. 

Visitors …

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Visitor restrictions in place at Powell Valley Healthcare

Posted

In response to rising rates of COVID cases, Powell Valley Healthcare placed temporary restrictions on visitation, in line with guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control. 

Visitors coming to see or accompanying patients at the hospital will be limited to one visit per day. 

So, for example, if a husband came to visit his wife at the hospital and then leaves, he would have to wait a day before he could visit her again. 

The hospital is limiting visits to people 16 years and older, and all visitors are required to get screened at the front desk. Masks are required by everyone in the facility, without exception. 

“If you are a visitor and you refuse to wear a mask, you will be asked to leave,” said Sara Welling, quality improvement and risk management services director. 

The cafeteria and gift shop are closed to the public. 

“We are putting everything in place to follow CDC guidelines. We’re out to protect not only our patients and community members, but also our employees,” Welling said. 

At the Powell Valley Care Center, they’ve had to implement what’s called “outbreak testing,” due to a staff member testing positive for COVID. None of the residents have tested positive or shown symptoms, said Michelle Petrich, interim director of the care center. 

Following guidance from the Wyoming Department of Health and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, they are restricting visitation. 

Petrich said that CMS has relaxed its guidance on the restrictions over what they were last year. Vaccinations have made it safer for the residents to see visitors, and CMS recognized the need to facilitate visits with friends and family for the residents’ wellbeing. 

These visits are limited to those that fall within the guidelines of “compassionate care” set by CMS. For example, a resident who is struggling to eat but has family members who can encourage him or her to do so, would fall within these guidelines. Another example is a new resident who is having a hard time adjusting and can benefit from visits from loved ones. 

“There’s various scenarios,” Petrich said. 

The restrictions allow for up to two visitors in the resident’s room, but no visits are allowed currently in the common areas. All visitors need to be screened and wear masks. 

If more than two visitors are coming to see a resident, the care center asks that they call ahead, and all visitors must be 16 years of age or older. Younger visitors can have outdoor visits with the residents. 

Petrich said they’re in their last round of testing in response to the positive case, and if the tests come back negative, the care center can resume its normal visitation procedures. 

The Heartland has had no positive cases and visitations are done as they normally are. Visitors need to check in at the desk and be screened, and visits are before 3 p.m. 

The Heartland is asking visitors to call ahead in case they have too many visitors coming at once. 

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