UK HealthCare

UK HealthCare Increases Visitor Restrictions Due to COVID Surge

Doctor visits woman with surgical mask.
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 12, 2021) — Beginning Friday, Aug. 13, UK HealthCare will begin a more restrictive visitor policy to further limit the number of people within its health care facilities during the current surge of COVID-19 infection.

This policy includes UK Chandler Hospital, UK Kentucky Children’s Hospital, UK Good Samaritan Hospital, Markey Cancer, UK HealthCare Turfland, Kentucky Clinic and all other UK HealthCare buildings and facilities. The visitor policy at Eastern State Hospital is unchanged with no visitors allowed. In general, the policy for hospitals and clinics will be:

  • Adult patients – one visitor at a time 18 or older allowed for non-COVID patients. (Two designated visitors total may rotate during an inpatient’s stay.)
  • Pediatric patients – one or two parents or legal guardians allowed.
  • Obstetrics – one support partner over the age 16 is allowed.
  • Emergency departments – two visitors allowed.
  • Surgery waiting area – two visitors allowed.
  • Post-anesthesia care areas – one visitor at a time.
  • Adult Behavioral Health – no visitors.
  • Adolescent Behavioral Health – both parents or guardians allowed with prior approval from the clinical leadership team.
  • Outpatient locations and clinics – one person may accompany an adult patient into an approved waiting area after completing screening. Pediatric patients may have one or two parents or legal guardians accompany them to an approved waiting area upon completion of screening. Areas with high-risk patients may have additional restrictions.

For more specific information about the policy, go to Visitor Restrictions posted to the UK HealthCare COVID-19 site for providers and staff. Exceptions will continue to be made for end-of-life situations, patient care conferences and other circumstances at the discretion of unit management.

To help prevent the spread of infection, all hospital and clinic visitors also are required to: 

  • Wear a mask at all times inside UK HealthCare facilities. This includes in a patient’s room.
  • Stop at a check-in station and pass a screening before entering our facilities. Overnight visitors must return to a station each day to complete screening and obtain proper verification.
  • Show a photo ID for entry. Valid ID includes a driver’s license, passport, government-issued ID, employee ID or student ID. If a valid form of identification is not provided, entry to the facility will be denied.
  • Limit the number of personal items brought into any UK HealthCare facility to reduce the transmission of germs.
  • Wash their hands or use hand sanitizer every time they enter or exit a patient room.

Family and friends of patients are encouraged to utilize alternative visitation options for the safety of patients and staff. iPad visitation is available on request. Phone calls and other virtual visits also are encouraged at this time.

As COVID-19 remains a significant health risk for many individuals, we continue to ask for your cooperation and assistance in complying with restrictions and our visitor guidelines,” said Dr. Mark F. Newman, University of Kentucky executive vice president for health affairs. “We appreciate your understanding during this time. The safety and well-being of our patients, employees and our community is our greatest concern and priority in making these decisions.”   

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.