Patient, Family & Caregiver Experience

Effective March 27, 2024 and subject to change.

Effective Wednesday, March 27, 2024 masking will be welcomed, but no longer required, in many clinical areas of HPHA’s hospital sites. The exception to this is any of HPHA’s Emergency Departments where masking will be required. Masking will also be required throughout the hospital sites for individuals who are experiencing symptoms of respiratory infection such as cough, fever and sore throat, and for those who are accompanying or visiting a patient with these symptoms. Hospital-provided medical grade masks will continue to be provided with masking stations set up throughout HPHA hospital sites, not just at entrances. Anyone entering the hospital is welcome to wear a mask.

Masking is Required

  • If you are a patient or caregiver in the Emergency Department
  • If you are a patient or caregiver who must travel from the Emergency Department to another area of the hospital such as Medical Imaging
  • You have symptoms of a respiratory infection (such as cough, fever, sore throat)
  • You are visiting a patient who is in isolation precautions
  • You are caring for someone with a respiratory infection

Caregivers or family members who decline to wear a mask in the above noted situations are not permitted to accompany or visit patient. Your mask should be covering your nose and mouth. Children under the age of two are not required to wear a mask.

You may want to wear a mask if:

  • You have an underlying medical condition, are immunocompromised or are an older adult
  • Your close contacts are more likely to get very sick if they contract COVID-19
  • You are in a crowded space
  • You had a high-risk exposure and may become sick

Self-Screening Requirement Before Entering

All individuals entering the hospital must follow infection prevention and control guidelines. The screening questions are displayed at all of the HPHA site locations.

Individuals should NOT come to the hospital if they:

  • Are feeling unwell
  • Have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 10 days
  • Have been tested for COVID-19 with results unknown
  • Have had close contact with a confirmed or suspect case of COVID-19 in the past 10 days

HPHA is committed to creating an environment that is supportive of patient & family centred care and recognizes the importance of family and caregiver presence for the health and well-being of our patients. However, based on direction from Public Health, additional safety precautions may be in place that will limit family caregivers and visitors for patients who:

  • are COVID-19 positive
  • are in isolation
  • reside on a unit in outbreak

Inpatients: Unlimited daily visitors, maximum of two (2) at a time during the hours of 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. * Exception may be given for Maternal Child partners/persons arriving outside these hours.

HPHA supports the presence of children under the age of 16 when accompanied by an adult.

Patient imminently approaching end-of-life: Family members or caregiver(s) may be present with patient 24/7; number at bedside may be limited based on the ability of staff to provide safe patient care. 

Emergency Department: Two (2) support persons to accompany an adult patient and two (2) support persons may accompany children and infants - mask must be worn.

Birthing Person: Two (2) support persons. Please contact the unit for specific details.

Community Outpatient Procedures and Clinic Appointments: One (1) support person to accompany an adult patient and two (2) support persons may accompany children and infants.

Outdoor Visiting
Arrangements can be made with the unit where the patient is receiving care for patients that can be safely transported by their support person(s).

While in the Hospital
To limit movement within the hospital, please stay in the patient’s room until you are ready to leave. Individuals should avoid consumption of food or drink in the patient rooms. Designated areas are available to purchase and consume meals and snacks.

Please do not use the patient washroom. Public washrooms are available; inquire with the unit where the patient is receiving care for locations.

Food and Personal Items for Patients
  • Individuals may bring in food for the patient they are visiting. All food containers must be disposed of or taken home.
  • Chemotherapy patients may bring their own food and drink to their appointment.

To maintain Infection Prevention and Control standards and the safety of our staff and patients, please bring only the listed items below to the hospital for patients.
  • glasses, hearing aids and dentures
  • mobility items (canes, walkers, wheelchairs)
  • new toiletries only
  • new grooming items – toothbrushes, combs and hair brushes
  • personal items- books, magazines, puzzle books, family photos etc.
  • mobile phone/tablet,
  • clean clothing and footwear
Please note that the organization does not assume responsibility for personal possessions, if lost while in hospital.

Please direct requests for special items to the Manager of the Unit where the patient is receiving care.
We thank you for your patience and support.

Concerns Related to HPHA Family & Caregiver Visiting Guidelines
As a first step, we encourage you to speak with the Manager of the unit where the patient is receiving care.
If you feel your question or concern requires further attention, please contact the Corporate Lead, Patient Experience & Privacy by phone: 1-888-275-1112 Ext. 2423 or email patientexperience2@hpha.ca and we would be pleased to assist you.

HPHA continues to monitor local COVID-19 activity and may be required to change/update Family & Caregiver Visiting Guidelines in response.

These guidelines have been reviewed and endorsed by our Patient & Caregiver Partners