Essentia Health announces visitor restrictions to its facilities

Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Brainerd Clinic is one of several regional health care providers taking precautions against the coronavirus. Frank Lee / Brainerd Dispatch

Essentia Health recently made the decision to restrict visitors at its hospitals to protect patients and staff, and prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

The changes went into effect noon Monday, March 16, because of the COVID-19 pandemic. No visitors are allowed except in the following circumstances:

  • Inpatients: Visitors only will be allowed based on compassionate-care needs. Family members are advised to call the hospital/unit before coming.

  • Emergency department: One visitor for pediatric, vulnerable adult, trauma or other patient requiring communication to a health care team on their behalf.

  • Pediatric patients: One adult visitor will be allowed per patient.

  • Labor and delivery patients: One adult visitor will be allowed per patient.

  • Neonatal intensive care unit: One parent is permitted to visit at a time.

All other visitors will be asked to leave the hospital. No visitors who are ill will be allowed either.
Essentia Health officials are encouraging family and friends to use other ways to communicate with patients, such as phone calls, Facetime and Skype instead of face-to-face contact.

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