Temporary Visitation Policies

We understand how important it is to support friends and loved ones during their hospital stay. At the same time, COVID-19 requires us to temporarily adjust our visitor policy in order to keep our patients and visitors safe from infection.

UF Health – Gainesville

Emergency Rooms and Centers

Visitation in UF Health Shands Emergency Departments will be limited in order to maintain at least 6 feet of physical distancing.

Pediatric E.R.

  • We are allowing only one adult visitor with the patient in the Pediatric E.R. and waiting areas.
  • Additional visitors must wait in an alternate location outside of the hospital or in their vehicle.
  • If the pediatric patient is admitted to the UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, two designated adult visitors will be allowed for the duration of the patient’s stay and must rotate no more frequently than every 24 hours.
  • No children under the age of 18 are permitted to visit the UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital or Pediatric E.R.

Adult E.R. 

  • We are no longer allowing visitors in the E.R. waiting area.
  • Adult visitors will be asked to wait outside of the hospital or in their vehicles.
  • Adult visitors will be contacted when they can return to the E.R.

UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital

  • Two designated visitors for the entirety of the hospital stay unless patient has tested positive for COVID-19, in which case, the patient will be restricted to one designated visitor. Both designated visitors can be at the bedside during visiting hours from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. One of the designated visitors may remain overnight at the bedside.
  • Designated visitors will receive a lime green wristband
  • For double occupancy rooms in which there are two patients, visitors will be required to wear face masks at all times unless sleeping.
  • No children under 18 are allowed as visitors.
  • Waiting rooms will be closed except for the surgical waiting room on the first floor.
  • Exceptions will be made for patients receiving end-of-life care.

Please note that this expansion of visitation is subject to change depending on COVID-19 numbers, influenza numbers and RSV numbers.

Adult Hospitals and Outpatient Surgical Centers

Visitor Policies

  • For all adult patients, one designated visitor per patient for the duration of the visit
  • For patients at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, a maximum of two designated adult visitors will be permitted per pediatric patient for the duration of the patient’s hospital stay unless the patient has tested positive for COVID-19, in which case, the patient will be restricted to one designated visitor.
  • Designated visitors will receive an orange wristband
  • No children under the age of 18 are permitted to visit

Virtual Visits

For everybody’s safety during the COVID-19 response, UF Health has taken the responsible step to limit visitors to our hospitals. Meanwhile, we appreciate that staying connected to loved ones can have a positive impact on a patient’s health and well-being. And it’s important for family and friends to stay in touch and aware of a patient’s status throughout their care. Thanks to today’s internet and social media tools, virtual communication is easier than ever. For detailed instructions on how to virtually visit your loved one using a smartphone, tablet, or laptop, select one of these options:

Patient Screenings

  • We will screen all patients and visitors entering our hospitals, outpatient surgery facilities and emergency rooms in Gainesville to help minimize the spread of COVID-19.
  • Visitors with illness symptoms, including fever, cough or shortness of breath; and those who have traveled internationally or returned from a cruise in the last 14 days will not be permitted to enter our hospitals, outpatient surgery facilities or emergency rooms.
  • All patients and visitors are required to wear a mask or face covering when entering UF Health facilities, in public/common areas and in patient care areas. If two or more people are within 6 feet of each other outdoors they must wear a mask or cloth face covering. Masks with exhalation valves are not permitted in UF Health facilities. In addition, neck gaiters and bandanas should not be worn unless no other face covering is available. Patients will be informed of this information via phone at the time of appointment scheduling, and information will be included on reminder calls.
  • Staff without a UF Health employee ID badge or GatorOne card will also be required to go through the screening process.

Screenings will take place at the following locations:

Outpatient Practices – Guests Accompanying Patients

Whenever possible, patients should come to appointments alone to support social distancing and decrease the number of people in our spaces. When others must accompany the patient to a visit, typically only one additional person is necessary (for example, parents of a child or support individuals for a vulnerable individual), and may not be able to accompany the patient all the way to exam spaces where distancing is not possible.

All patients and their accompanying guest are expected to wear a face covering while in our clinical areas.

UF Health Jacksonville

Updated July 4, 2020

Due to the sharp increase in the number of people testing positive in Duval County, we are making changes to several policies and guidelines effective July 5 across UF Health Jacksonville and UF Health North. Refer to the CDC website at cdc.gov/covid19 for updates on recommendations.

Patient Visitation

In order to minimize exposure related to the COVID-19 pandemic, visitation within the hospital is suspended until further notice.

The number of hospital entrances continues to be limited and all inpatient waiting areas will remain closed.

The following visitation exceptions will be considered:

  • Family members during end-of-life situations
  • Individuals authorized to make care decisions for patients
  • Parents/guardians of pediatric patients
  • Spouses/partners of Labor and Delivery patients

Approved visitors will be screened for fever, cough and shortness of breath, and will not be able to enter the facility if they have these symptoms.

Please note that masks/face coverings are required on all UF Health campuses and facilities.

Building Entrances

We are limiting access to buildings on the UF Health Jacksonville and UF Health North campuses.

  • Clinical Center: Two entrances remain open for patients and visitors: at the front lobby off of 8th Street and at the emergency room off of Roy Baker Drive. All other entrances are closed to visitors. Staff will continue to use the MRI staff entrance behind the hospital or any badge tap doors.
  • Ambulatory Care Center: Main entrance remains open. Double doors by the emergency room entrance are closed.
  • Towers: Use the main entrance on ground floor.
  • Pavilion: Use the main entrance on ground floor.
  • UF Health North: Entrance for patients and visitors is limited to one point at the front of the building. Employees can use their badge to enter through the back of the building.

Outpatient Practices

  • Patients will continue to follow social distancing requirements, and face masks are required.
  • Office staff will provide you with additional guidance.

Valet Services

  • Valet services remain suspended.

UF Health – Central Florida

  • In line with the governor’s recommendations, UF Health Central Florida facilities will restrict visitors to only one per patient.
  • All patients and visitors will continue to be medically screened, including temperature checks, at hospital entrances upon arrival.
  • Maternity patients who test positive for COVID-19 are not permitted to have visitors at this time.
  • Visitors and staff will be required to wear masks at all times while in the hospital.
  • Visitors are expected to follow verbal and/or posted instructions, such as signs that read No Visitors or Isolation.
  • Hospital visiting hours are from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.