Family and Visitor Guidelines

Updated January 12, 2022

This affects all Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist locations. 

Visitation guidelines are in place to support and protect our patients, families, visitors, and teammates.  All visitors must be at least 18 years old, pass a health screening, and wear a mask at all times. All visitors must properly wear a mask covering the nose, mouth and chin, and comply with social distancing guidelines AT ALL TIMES while visiting any Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist facility.

Visitors who do not comply with these requirements will be asked to leave.

Visitor access is limited to certain entrances at each medical center within the Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist system.

All visitors will be required to pass a health screening each time they enter our facilities at one of our designated entry points.

  • These screenings require everyone to sanitize their hands, put on a mask and answer questions about symptoms of illness and exposure risks prior to entering the facility.
  • No visitors with an acute condition such as fever, cough, cold, stomach virus or flu-like symptoms may enter our facilities.
  • No visitors who have come into contact with someone who is under investigation for COVID-19, or who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the last ten (10) days may enter our facilities.

Clergy are allowed to visit a patient who requests or consents to the visit and are not counted as the one approved visitor for the day. Clergy must pass entrance screening, wear a mask and other appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), and wash hands when entering and exiting a patient room. Effective October 1, 2021, exceptions are permitted if the use of PPE interferes with the religious beliefs of the patient or visiting clergy member.

To protect the health and safety of our patients, families and teammates, in-person visitation should be limited to the greatest extent possible, and we ask that visitors only come to the medical center or clinics when necessary.

We always encourage patients and visitors to use electronic methods of communication with their loved ones, such as phone, text, FaceTime or Skype, as much as possible.

If a patient or family member feels their visitation rights have been violated, they may contact department leadership on their loved one’s unit, Patient Experience - 336-713-2273, the Department of Health and Human Services at 1-800-624-3004, or CMS Region 4 office ROATLORA@cms.hhs.gov.

Inpatient Visitation Guidelines

Adult Inpatients

  • Two healthy adult family members/support persons age 18 or older may accompany/visit the patient during visitation hours (6 am – 8 pm).
  • Family members/support persons may switch during the same day. To ensure social distancing, visitors should switch away from patient care areas.
  • One healthy adult family member/support person age 18 or older may stay overnight with the patient. Overnight support person must stay at the patient’s bedside.
  • If a visitor or support person becomes sick or exhibits symptoms of COVID-19, they must exit the medical center immediately.
  • No visitors for COVID-19 positive patients and those suspected of having COVID-19. Exceptions may be made by the care team in support of the No Patient Left Alone Act if the patient meets one of the following “compassionate care” conditions, as defined by law:
    • End-of-life situations.
    • A patient who was living with his or her family before recently being admitted to the facility is struggling with the change in environment and lack of physical family support.
    • A patient who is grieving after a friend or family member recently passed away.
    • A patient who needs cueing and encouragement with eating or drinking, previously provided by family or caregivers, or is experiencing weight loss or dehydration.
    • A patient, who used to talk and interact with others, is --experiencing emotional distress, seldom speaking or crying more frequently when the patient had rarely cried in the past.

Note: Exceptions will be determined by the care team. Only one (1) visitor may visit for two (2) hours daily. The visitor must wear full PPE, including gown, gloves, N95 mask and eye protection and must remain in the patient’s room for the duration of the visit.  

Pediatric Inpatients (Brenner Children's)

  • Two healthy parents or legal guardians age 18 or older may accompany the patient at all times and may stay overnight with the patient.

Outpatient/Ambulatory Clinic Visitation Guidelines

Adult Outpatients

  • One healthy adult family member/support person age 18 or older may accompany the patient.
  • Patients are asked to only bring children to appointments if childcare is not available. 

Pediatric Outpatients

  • Two healthy parents or legal guardians age 18 or older may accompany the patient.
  • Parents or legal guardians are asked to only bring other children to appointments if childcare is not available. 

Maternity Visitation Guidelines

  • Two healthy adult family members/support persons age 18 and older are allowed for the patient’s entire stay. A labor coach or doula counts as one of the support persons. A labor coach or doula may be present during labor and delivery but must leave within 2 hours after delivery.
  • Family member/support persons may switch during the same day. To ensure social distancing, visitors should switch away from patient care areas.
  • For C-section deliveries, only one support person may accompany the patient during the C-section. A labor coach may be the one support person.
  • Two healthy family member/support persons will be permitted on the antepartum unit.
  • Two healthy family members/support persons will be permitted on the postpartum unit.
  • Patients are encouraged to carefully select their family member/support person and labor coach/doula (when applicable) to reduce exposure to their newborn.  If selecting someone outside of their household, it is recommended that this person self-quarantine for 14 days prior to delivery date.
  • This applies to obstetric departments at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Wilkes Medical Center, and Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist High Point Medical Center.
     

Emergency Department Visitation Guidelines

Adult Emergency Department

  • One healthy adult family member/support person age 18 or older may accompany the patient any time of the day, as long as the lobby remains at safe seating capacity.
  • Family member/support person may switch during the visit. To ensure social distancing, visitors should switch away from patient care areas.
  • If the lobby exceeds safe seating capacity, only essential visitors (those assisting with cognitive, mobility, or communication needs) may remain in the lobby, and all other visitors must remain outside the Adult Emergency Department until the patient is placed in a treatment space.
  • Once patients are admitted from the ED, guidelines for hospitalized patients are in effect.

Pediatric Emergency Department

  • Two healthy parents or legal guardians age 18 or older may accompany the patient any time of the day.
  • Family member/support persons may switch during the visit. To ensure social distancing, visitors should switch away from patient care areas.
  • Parents or legal guardians are asked to only bring other children if childcare is not available. 

Surgical Services Visitation Guidelines

Adult Surgical Services

  • One healthy adult family member/support person age 18 or older may accompany the patient.
  • The healthy adult family member/support person must be at least 18 years old in order to be the responsible party for the patient at discharge.

Pediatric Surgical Services

  • Two healthy parents or legal guardians age 18 or older may accompany the patient.
  • The healthy adult family members/support persons must be at least 18 years old in order to be the responsible parties for the patient at discharge.