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Nova Scotia Health starts to ease visitor restrictions at hospitals

The phased approach will align with the timing of Nova Scotia’s reopening plan
101317-QE2-QEII-hospital-emergency room-1-MG
The emergency room at the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre (Meghan Groff/HalifaxToday.ca)

NEWS RELEASE
NOVA SCOTIA HEALTH
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Nova Scotia Health will begin easing restrictions at its facilities beginning on Wednesday, June 9, 2021. This will allow more opportunities for family caregivers and primary support persons to support patients in the hospital, where it is feasible and safe to do so within public health guidelines.

The phased approach will align with the timing of Nova Scotia’s reopening plan and consider several factors including COVID-19 cases, number of hospital and ICU admissions and vaccination rates. The easing of visitor restrictions will happen in phases, with each phase expected to last two and four weeks.

Effective, Wednesday, June 9, 2021, we will ease visitor restrictions to allow:

  • TWO family/support people for intensive care units (ICU), for critically ill patients in the emergency department and for labour and birth.

During Phase 2 (earliest date June 16), visitor restrictions will ease further to allow:

  • ONE designated family/support person for all inpatients.
  • ONE designated family/support person for patients in emergency departments.
  • THREE designated support people at a time for palliative patients and others nearing end-of-life.

During Phase 3 (earliest date June 30), restrictions would ease further to allow:

  • TWO designated family/support person for inpatients.
  • FOUR designated support people at a time for palliative patients and others nearing end-of-life (private room and at the discretion of healthcare team).

During Phase 4, (starting when the province moves to Phase 4 of the reopening plan), restrictions would ease further to allow:

  • ONE designated family/support person for ambulatory appointments.

Details for each phase could change and will be confirmed at the time of implementation. 

Family/support person and caregiver restrictions are in place to protect patients, visitors, and health care workers by preventing the introduction and spread of COVID-19 at Nova Scotia Health facilities. We understand how difficult these restrictions are for patients and families, and know how important it is to have loved ones present while in hospital. Research shows that family caregiver/support person presence reduces complications and stress for everyone involved and enhances the patient’s overall experience of care.

Nova Scotia Health sincerely thanks Nova Scotians for their patience throughout the pandemic and as we work to safely welcome more family members and caregivers back to our facilities.

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