Beaufort Memorial Hospital (BMH) is expanding visitor restrictions to prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses and to protect the health of its patients and staff following an announcement by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) that there are three confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Beaufort County.
Effective immediately the following restrictions apply:
·Only immediate family members over age 18 are allowed to visit patients.
·Only one visitor per patient is allowed. Additional visitors should not come to the hospital.
·Groups of visitors “taking turns” in and out of a patient’s room will not be permitted.
·Visitors with any symptoms of illness will not be allowed to visit patients or patient care areas.
·All preexisting visitor restrictions will remain in place until further notice.
The patient’s provider and care team will work with families who have special circumstances, such as a critically ill or injured family member, on a case-by-case basis.
“Our number one priority is the health and safety of our patients and staff,” said Beaufort Memorial President and CEO Russell Baxley. “Given the rapidly evolving nature of this pandemic we ask for patience and cooperation as we work to provide the best care possible to our patients.”
Hospital officials are urging patients and visitors to use other means of contact such as phone calls and video chats using mobile phones, tablets or other devices.
Infection prevention experts advise anyone with symptoms and concerns about COVID-19 to call their primary care physician or urgent care center, or utilize a video visit with a telemedicine service like BMH Care Anywhere or MUSC Health Virtual Care, for pre-screening and instructions before showing up in person. Members of the public who would like information related to COVID-19 may also contact the DHEC Care Line at (855) 472-3432. A triage nurse will be available to provide guidance.
For more information about COVID-19 cases in South Carolina as well as guidelines and testing criteria visit https://www.scdhec.gov/health/infectious-diseases or https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus. For information about Beaufort Memorial, visit www.beaufortmemorial.org or call (843) 522-5560 for recorded updates and, if needed, access to a nurse. Questions about COVID-19 also can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.