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Visitor Restriction Guidelines for Polk County Hospitals

(Des Moines, IA) – Due to significant increases in positive COVID-19 cases in Iowa, including Polk and Dallas Counties, the following visitor restriction policies have been put in place by Broadlawns Medical Center, MercyOne Des Moines and West Des Moines Medical Centers and UnityPoint Health – Des Moines.

Effective Tuesday, July 21, 2020, visitors will no longer be allowed. One or two designated caregiver(s) will only be allowed in the following circumstances:

  • A patient is imminently dying. Two caregivers will be allowed at a time; caregivers may rotate at the discretion of the clinical care team.  Visitors under the age of 18 may be allowed in this case, at the discretion of the clinical care team.
  • The patient is being treated in an Emergency Department (ED)/Trauma Service, outpatient clinic, and/or undergoing surgery. One designated caregiver will be allowed.

  • The patient is a minor under the age of 18 years. Two parents/designated caregivers/ guardians at a time will be allowed in the patient’s room to support care of the patient; designated caregivers may rotate at the discretion of the clinical care team. 

  • The patient is suffering from confusion or delirium. One designated caregiver will be allowed in the patient’s room to support the care of the patient.
     
  • In maternity services (Labor & Delivery, Postpartum, OB ED, MTT), one designated caregiver/support person and 1 certified doula/outside birth coach will be allowed in the patient’s room to support the care of the mother.

Designated caregivers must be older than 16 years of age and free of any signs of illness and will be screened for symptoms of COVID-19. Designated caregivers must bring a mask to wear upon entering the hospital or clinic. Individuals at high risk for severe disease (e.g., underlying cardiopulmonary disease, poorly controlled diabetes) should not visit.

Designated caregivers:

  • Siblings under the age of 16 are not allowed.
  • Must always remain in patient room as appropriate
  • Free from illness such as (fever, sore throat, cough, diarrhea, vomiting or runny nose)
  • Limit movement within the facility and avoid common areas (cafeterias will not be open to the public)

We understand these visitor restrictions may be difficult for you. While we are committed to providing a family-centered care environment, right now restricting visitors is in the best interest of our hospitalized patients and staff.

Thank you for your cooperation in this effort. For up-to-date information related to COVID-19, please visit www.polkcountyiowa.gov/health.

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If you think you need to get tested for COVID-19 or have been exposed, call your clinic FIRST. DO NOT go to the ER or clinic. You could potentially expose others to COVID-19 or be exposed to COVID-19.