An Update on South Shore Health's Visitor Policy

This page was most recently updated December 30, 2020, to clarify visitor policies for prenatal appointments. It was originally published March 5, 2020.

South Shore Health’s top priority is the safety of our patients, their loved ones, our community, and our colleagues.

As cases of COVID-19 continue to climb throughout the region, we’ve updated our visitor policy.

Effective December 1, 2020, visitors will not be permitted in South Shore Hospital's Inpatient Units, Emergency Department, and Emergency Room Observation, Annex, and West units.

There are very limited exceptions to these policies, including for minor patients, patients with guardians, end of life/advanced care planning, or other extenuating circumstances. 

All exceptions to these policies must be approved by the patient’s care team prior to your visit.

Approved South Shore Hospital visitors must enter through the McKim Family Main Entrance, and must follow South Shore Health's mask policy (see below) at all times.

Specific guidelines for various patient populations can be seen below.

COVID Positive or Suspected Positive Patients

Patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have a suspected case will not be allowed in-person visitors.  

Inpatient Units

No visitors are allowed. Exceptions must be approved in advance by a patient's care team. 

Emergency Room Observation, Annex and West Units

No visitors are allowed. Exceptions must be approved in advance by a patient's care team.  

Emergency Department

Adults: No visitors are allowed. Pediatric: One Parent/Guardian. 

Exceptions must be approved by the care team.

Special Care Nursery/NICU

Both parents are allowed to visit for the duration of their child’s stay between the hours of 8 AM and 8 PM. 

Pediatrics

Both caregivers are allowed to visit for the duration of their child’s stay between the hours of 8 AM and 8 PM, and one caregiver may stay overnight for the duration of their child’s stay. 

Labor & Delivery/Maternity 

Support persons are not allowed for prenatal appointments, except in very limited circumstances. One support person may visit freely for the duration of a patient’s hospital stay. A doula is also permitted for labor and birth. 

Surgical Services

No visitors are allowed. Exceptions must be approved in advance by a patient's care team.  

Outpatient and Ambulatory Sites

No visitors are allowed. Accommodations are made for patients with functional impairments or disabilities, and parents unable to obtain childcare.

Mask Policy for Visitors

Recently, the CDC updated its guidance around the use of cloth masks in health care settings, recommending the use of disposable masks as a safer alternative.

As a result, effective Wednesday, October 28, visitors will be required to wear disposable medical masks for the duration of their visit.

Cloth masks, scarves, bandannas, neck extenders/gaiters, and handkerchiefs will no longer be permitted. 

Visitors should plan accordingly and bring an appropriate mask with them. If a visitor doesn't have a mask that meets South Shore Health requirements at the time of arrival, a mask will be provided.

Refusal to wear a mask will result in the revocation of visitation.

Please visit our frequently updated COVID-19 page for more information.