As the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients decreases and more than half of the state’s population has been vaccinated, Memorial Health System is easing visitor restrictions today (June 11) at its five hospitals.
Those hospitals – Memorial Medical Center in Springfield, Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital in Lincoln, Decatur Memorial Hospital, Passavant Area Hospital in Jacksonville and Taylorville Memorial Hospital – now will permit two visitors at a time for each adult inpatient between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.
The hospitals also will allow one overnight visitor for each patient. However, no visitors will be permitted for patients being treated for COVID-19 or being evaluated for the virus until a COVID-19 infection is ruled out.
The decision comes as Illinois prepares to enter the final stage, known as Phase 5, of its recovery plan in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In this phase, the state will loosen restrictions and fully reopen all sectors of the economy.
“Our first priority has always been and continues to be to keep our patients and frontline healthcare workers safe from this virus,” said Dr. Raj Govindaiah, senior vice president and chief medical officer for Memorial Health System. “We recognize that these tightened visitor guidelines have been challenging for patients and their families. That’s why we’re grateful we have reached a point in our fight against COVID-19 where we can safely ease these guidelines.”
Some preventive measures will remain at the five hospitals. Masks will still be required. Visitors will continue to check in at the entrances. Social distancing, especially in waiting rooms, will continue to be observed.
Eleven COVID-19 patients, six of whom were in intensive care, were in Memorial Health System’s hospitals as of June 4. That represents a decrease from a high of 173 patients back on Nov. 30, 2020.