Increased visitation for KEMH acute care patients from 4 August

Monday 3 August 2020: Bermuda Hospitals Board (BHB) today announces that, given the sustained low prevalence of COVID-19 in Bermuda, that it will allow more visitation over increased hours for acute care patients at KEMH from Tuesday 4 August 2020.

Acute care patients in the Acute Care Wing units (Ace Barber, Ascendent Partner Re, Catlin Lindo): patients who are not on isolation can have up to two visitors in their room at any one time between noon and 6pm.

Acute care patients in the General Wing (Curtis Ward): as these rooms are smaller and have other patients in, acute care patients in the General Wing (Curtis Ward) can have one visitor in their room at any one time between noon and 6pm.

Isolation patients: For patients on isolation due to a known infection of any kind, or in the first 24 hours of admission while waiting for results of the required COVID-19 test, two designated support people pre-identified by the patient will be able to visit for up to two hours per day.

The following requirements must be followed when visiting any BHB services:

  • Visitors must be masked at all times, including in patient rooms
  • Visitors must maintain physical distancing at all times, including in patient rooms
  • People who have symptoms of COVID-19 or any other infection will not be allowed to visit
  • For infection control purposes, visitors will not be allowed to use patient bathrooms and will need to use public restrooms on each floor
  • Overnight stays are not allowed at this time, other than in exceptional circumstances

Norma Smith, Vice President, Clinical Operations (Acute and Ambulatory) comments: “We are encouraged by the sustained low prevalence of COVID-19 in Bermuda at this time and feel it is currently safe to allow visitation so our patients benefit from the love and support of their families and close friends. As front line carers, we see the difference it makes. We remain on alert, however. Our ability to increase visitation may change if there is evidence of second wave of infections in Bermuda. However, while it is safe to do so, we look forward to welcoming more visitors.

The following departments have also increased visiting hours:

Intensive Care Unit

  • Designated support people now allowed to visit for two hours between 10am and 2pm, or 4pm and 8pm
  • Visitors must be on the ICU visitors list

Maternity

  • One designated support person may stay up to 8 hours after the birth
  • If the mother is not discharged within 24 hours, the support person will now be allowed to visit up to 4 hours a day between 10am and 6pm
  • If the support person leaves the hospital during visiting hours they will not be permitted back on the unit

Visitation in other BHB areas remains unchanged at this time during the pandemic:

Acute Inpatient Care for Mid-Atlantic Wellness Institute services (adult, child and adolescent services):

  • Pre-identified support people can visit for 30 minutes each day between 12 noon and 6pm
  • Support people should check in at the front desk
  • One person can visit at any one time and visitation will be in a public space, such as a family conference room

Long Term Care (KEMH and MWI), including Group Homes

  • One designated support person can visit for one hour each day between 12 noon and 6pm

Emergency Department and Lamb Foggo Urgent Care Centre

  • Patients should come to emergency on their own, to minimise numbers in the ED waiting room and ensure physical distancing is possible
  • Exceptions for one visitor will be made in the following circumstances:
    • Vulnerable individuals and children (1 parent/support person)
    • Combative individuals
    • End of life cases
    • Deaths (prior to or within the ED)

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Notes to Editors
The Bermuda Hospitals Board is a quango (quasi autonomous non-governmental organisation) established under the Bermuda Hospitals Board Act, 1970. It has a Bermuda Government-approved Board and a Chief Executive Officer, responsible for King Edward VII Memorial Hospital and Mid-Atlantic Wellness Institute. At the heart of both organisations is high-quality care to all patients.

With approximately 1,700 employees, the Bermuda Hospitals Board is Bermuda's second largest employer. King Edward VII Memorial Hospital and Mid-Atlantic Wellness Institute are the only healthcare organisations in Bermuda accredited by Accreditation Canada, an independent organisation whose role is to help hospitals examine and improve the quality of care and service they provide to their clients. In addition to providing an extensive list of services for the community, the Bermuda Hospitals Board is part of a referral network that includes some of the world's leading specialist hospitals.

For more information, please visit www.bermudahospitals.bm or contact the Bermuda Hospitals Board Public Relations Department at publicrelations@bhb.bm.