Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Information for Hospital Visitors

With the number of COVID cases dropping throughout the state, and in accordance with Rhode Island Department of Health guidance, Lifespan has moved to a less restrictive visitation policy at our acute care hospitals.

Please note that there is still no visitation for COVID positive patients, except under special circumstances. If your family member is COVID-positive, please consult with the care team. 

General Guidelines for Visitors

All visitors will be screened for symptoms or potential exposure to COVID-19. Those who screen positive for any symptoms will not be able to visit.

Visitors must be at least 18 years old.

  • Patients should identify two visitors for the duration of the hospital stay, who may enter during designated visitation hours. At Rhode Island and Newport hospitals, the two visitors may enter together. At The Miriam Hospital, one visitor at a time may enter, unless one visitor requires an escort.
  • For patients who are being cared for at end-of-life, up to two visitors at a time will be able to visit for 30 minutes. Additional visitors may enter after the original visitors exit, always for 30 minutes at a time.  
  • All visitors are required to be masked at all times, including in patient rooms.
  • No eating or drinking are permitted during the visit, and visitors may not carry in any food or drink. Visitors who arrive with food or drink will be asked to leave it in their cars, or to dispose of it before entering the hospital.
  • The cafeterias and cafes remain closed to visitors. 

Visiting Hours at Lifespan Hospitals

  • Rhode Island Hospital:
    • General visiting hours: 2-6 p.m. 
    • Behavioral Health Unit: 4-6 p.m.
  • Hasbro Children's Hospital: Please read these guidelines before visiting Hasbro Children's Hospital 
  • The Miriam Hospital: 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 5–7 p.m. 
  • Newport Hospital:
    • Medical/Surgical and ICU: 1-3 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. 
    • Vanderbilt Inpatient Unit: 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. 
    • Behavioral Health Unit: 1-2 p.m. and 7-8 p.m.
    • Maternity services will allow for a birthing partner only. 

Additional Guidelines for Visitors

Outpatient/Office Visits: One person may escort a patient to an appointment, at the discretion of the patient's care team.

Adult Emergency Departments: At this time, Lifespan has a no visitors policy in its adult emergency departments. If necessary for patient care, one family member may be permitted during the intake process.

Woman and young daughter on laptop

Remote Visits Encouraged

Care teams continue to encourage the use of devices such as smartphones and iPads to communicate with patients in lieu of in-person visits whenever possible. Lifespan can provide devices to use for virtual visits for patients who don't have them.

Support for Patients with Disabilities

When a support person is essential to care for a patient with a disability, including patients who have altered mental status, communication barriers, or behavioral concerns (such as patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities, dementia, and/or behavioral health needs), accommodations for the patient will be made so that the patient can be visited or accompanied by a support person.

The support person must be at least 18 years of age and can serve as the primary communicator with hospital staff and provide informed consent when necessary to comply with the civil rights of patients with disabilities. A support person may include a family member, guardian, community support provider, peer support specialist, or personal care attendant. In some instances, there may be a need to permit two support people to ease the burden on any one individual.

Support persons are also encouraged to use remote visitation using telephones, tablets, and computers when appropriate. Please reach out to a patient’s care team with any questions. 

Please Continue to Follow Safety Precautions.

Simple precautions remain the first line of defense against respiratory viruses. Lifespan urges the public to please continue to follow the usual guidelines:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if you’re unable to wash your hands.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. 
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are touched frequently (e.g., phones, doorknobs). 
  • Stay home if you are sick. 

Lifespan is committed to continually monitoring and evaluating the situation, and will continue to act in the best interest of our patients and employees. We thank our patients and their loved ones for their understanding as we work to ensure a safe environment for our patients and our workforce. 

Updated 5/2/21