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

Last Updated May 25, 2022
Please note that this expansion of visitation is subject to change depending on COVID-19 numbers, influenza numbers and RSV numbers.

Masking Policy

All patients and visitors must wear a Level 1 yellow medical ear loop mask. These masks will be provided upon entry to our facilities. If visitors have their own KN95 or N95 masks, they may wear those instead of the loop mask. Masks with exhalation valves are not permitted in UF Health facilities. Level 1 yellow masks are also available in our patient care areas for visitors.


COVID-19 Testing

Hospital Admissions

All patients who will be admitted to the hospital are required to receive a COVID-19 test. The test will be administered regardless of vaccination status.

We allow a five-day window for COVID-19 testing prior to:

  • Elective procedures
  • Planned hospital admissions
  • Scheduled post-operative admissions

Hospital Procedures

Adult Patients
All patients are required to have a COVID-19 test prior to undergoing an aerosol generating procedure. This includes all patients undergoing general anesthesia.

The test is required regardless of vaccination status. Proof of test results from UF Health, as well as outside PCR and antigen-based tests, are acceptable if they are within five days from the procedure.

Pediatric Patients
A pre-procedural COVID-19 test is required for all pediatric patients (anyone under 18) who:

  • Are under five years old and will be receiving deep sedation or general anesthesia
  • Will be admitted post-procedure to the hospital
  • Are having an MRI with sedation in UF Health Shands Hospital
  • Any child who is symptomatic, has a close or household COVID-19 positive contact, or has symptoms of COVID-19 with unknown test results.

Test site and hours

The test site is located at UF Health Professional Park, at 3300 SW Williston Road. Please call 352-265-2778 to schedule an appointment.


Visitation Policies

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

Emergency Rooms and Centers

Visitation in UF Health Emergency Rooms will continue to be limited in order to maintain physical distancing.

Pediatric E.R.

  • Two designated visitors will be allowed that remain in the room the entire stay.
  • 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, four designated adult visitors will be allowed for the duration of the patient’s stay and must rotate two at a time 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., UF Health Emergency Center – Kanapaha and UF Health Shands Emergency Center – Springhill

  • One designated visitor in the lobby and in the ED bay.
  • Additional visitors will be asked to wait outside of the hospital or in their vehicles.

UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital

  • Four designated visitors, rotating two at a time, for the entirety of the hospital stay will be allowed.
  • If the patient has tested positive for COVID-19, one visitor designated as an essential caregiver will be allowed and must wear a KN95 and remain in the patient’s room for the duration of the visit.
  • Two 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.
  • 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.

UF Health Adult Hospitals

  • Four designated adult visitors will be allowed for the duration of the adult patient’s stay and must rotate so there are only two designated visitors at a time.
  • If an adult patient has tested positive for COVID-19, one visitor designated as an essential caregiver will be allowed and must wear a KN95 mask and remain in the patient’s room for the duration of the visit.
  • Visitors will be required to wear face masks at all times.
  • No children under 18 are allowed as visitors.
  • Exceptions will be made for adult patients receiving end-of-life care.

For Labor and Delivery rooms

  • Normal vaginal delivery
    • One visitor at the bedside for triage.
    • Two visitors at the bedside during labor birth and two-hour recovery period after birth.
  • C-section delivery
    • One visitor at the bedside for triage.
    • One visitor in the operating room and recovery room (PACU).

Outpatient Surgical Centers

  • Two designated adult visitors will be allowed for the duration of the adult patient’s stay and must rotate so there is only one designated visitor at a time.
  • If an adult patient has tested positive for COVID-19, one visitor designated as an essential caregiver will be allowed and must wear a KN95 mask.Visitors will be required to wear face masks at all times. Visitors will be required to wear face masks at all times.
  • No children under the age of 18 are permitted to visit.
  • Exceptions will be made for adult patients receiving end-of-life care.

Complaints regarding the hospital’s visitor policies and patient rights related to visitation with their family may be directed to Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration at 888-775-6055.

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:

UF Health Perinatal Units

Triage, OB Operating Rooms, Pre-Op & PACU

  • Only one adult visitor is allowed at the patient’s bedside.
  • No children under the age of 18 are permitted to visit.

Antepartum and Unit 95 – Mother/Baby

  • Four designated adult visitors will be allowed for the duration of the adult patient’s stay and must rotate so there are only two adult visitors at a time.
  • No children under the age of 18 are permitted to visit.

NICU (Neonatal ICU)

  • Two designated adult visitors, including the newborn’s mother, will be allowed for the duration of the adult patient’s stay and must rotate so there are only two adult visitors at a time.
  • No children under the age of 18 are permitted to visit.

UF Health Psychiatric Hospital

  • Two visitors at any given time.
  • No children under the age of 18 are allowed to visit.
  • Visitor self-screening is required for entry; visitors who have signs and symptoms of illness, including fever, cough or shortness of breath are not allowed to visit.
  • Daily Visitation Hours: 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily for adolescents; for adults, please call 352.627.0034 for designated hours.
  • Please practice excellent infection control by covering your mouth when you cough, washing your hands and using hand sanitizer frequently.

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

Visit the Jacksonville site for updated visitation information.


UF Health – Central Florida

Updated April 20, 2022

FOR THE SAFETY AND CONSIDERATION OF ALL PATIENTS AND OUR TEAM MEMBERS, VISITORS ARE TO ADHERE TO THE FOLLOWING GUIDELINES:

  1. Visiting HOURS are from 8AM to 8PM. We reserve the right to temporarily amend visiting hours and guidelines due to community threat or illness.
  2. Visitors may be subject to screening for symptoms of acute respiratory illness before entering the hospital. Visitors should not come to the hospital if they have a cold, sore throat, fever, cough or other transmissible illness.
  3. Visitors are expected to follow verbal and/or posted instructions example “No Visitors” and/or “Isolation” signs.
  4. Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult and stay with the adult when visiting a patient. Maternal Child has specific rules pertaining to children when visiting their area.
  5. Patients under “Isolation/Precautions” may have visitation arranged. The clinician, patient and support person (visitor) will work collaboratively to determine a schedule. 2 visitors per day will be permitted with a limit of 1 visitor in the room at a time for no longer than two hours. Extension of visitation and special consideration beyond the two hours will be on a case-by-case basis. Nursing will assist with training on required PPE prior to the visitor entering the patient’s room. Visitors must wear PPE during the entire visit and stay in the patient’s room or they may be asked to leave. Visitors of patients under “Isolation/Precautions” will be screened when entering the building and are not to go to other areas of the hospital including cafeteria, gift shop or other patient rooms. They should limit contact with others in elevator and lobby areas.
  6. If a patient is requesting a visitor/family to stay overnight, efforts will be made to place patient in a private room – if available.
  7. Ask visitors to leave the patient’s room during physician and/or provider examination unless the patient has requested the visitor to remain. Visitors are to utilize waiting rooms or waiting areas when patients are in OR, testing or treatments.
  8. Food may not be brought in to patients, unless approved by the doctor or nurse.
  9. To ensure a quiet environment, instruct to use cellular phone at a minimum and keep the “ringing” volume set to low or vibrate.
  10. Direct visitors to use designated public bathroom outside of the patient’s room.
  11. UF Health Central Florida does not allow firearms, alcohol, smoking (including vapor) on the premises. Security can only take possession for safe keeping those items belonging to patients. Contact security if such items are suspected or found in the possession of a visitor. The hospital and its owned property does reserve the right to search bags, boxes and other containers if the staff believes there is a reasonable suspicion of an item that may cause harm to the patient, staff or facilities.

Any issues or concerns with visitors shall be referred to the unit director or administrative supervisor.

We will:

  • Inform patients or their support person of the right to receive or refuse visitors (a support person is defined as family member, friend or other individual who supports the patient during his or her hospital stay and may exercise the patient’s visitation rights on his or her behalf);
  • Not restrict or limit visiting privileges on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability;
  • Limit number of visitors to two per patient at a time. Length and frequency of visitation depends on condition of patient and the level of treatment required.

Visitors agree to:

  • Be respectful to staff, patients, other visitors and facility property
  • Adhere to hospital policies and procedures which includes but is not limited to:
    • No running, horse play, yelling, cursing
    • No video or photography without expressed permission
    • No weapons or other contraband (see #11 above)

After hours visitation:

Visitors are to obtain an identification sticker from security after hours (8PM to 5:30AM) located in the emergency room at both UF Health Leesburg Hospital and UF Health The Villages® Hospital. Non-badge wearing visitors after hours are to be redirected to security. When a visitor presents after hours, security will do the following:

  1. Explain to the visitor that normal visiting hours are from 8AM to 8PM.
  2. If the visitor cannot come back or has extenuating circumstances, (i.e. patient in critical condition, out of state, etc.) have the visitor complete the Visitation Book.
  3. Security will gather identification from the visitor and place a phone call to the nursing unit where the patient is located.
  4. Security will advise the floor of a potential after hours visitor and will ask for nurse approval.
  5. If the patient’s nurse approves the after hours visit, security will gather and review proper identification from the visitor and issue a visitor pass. The visitor log book retains a carbon copy of the pass issued. (Visitor passes are good for the day/or the overnight they are issued.)
  6. If the patient’s nurse does not approve the after hours visit, security will advise the visitor accordingly and suggest that they return during normal visiting hours.
  7. At times, a visitor may want to question the decision made not to allow them access to the building. Those incidents should be reported to the nursing supervisor.

The nursing supervisor has final authority on visitation if it is observed that it is not contributing to the welfare and in the best interest to the patient.