Nova Scotia Health Visitor Restrictions

(last updated: July 16, 2021)

Nova Scotia Health is further easing restrictions to allow more opportunities for family caregivers and primary support persons to support patients where it is feasible and safe to do so within public health guidelines. 

In an effort to enhance family presence and increase the number of people able to provide support, patients arriving for ambulatory appointments will now be permitted to have one support person accompany them.

Effective July 16, support people/family caregivers are permitted for patients in the following situations:
 

Three designated family/primary support person(s) or family caregivers are welcomed:
  • Palliative care and other patients nearing end of life*
  • Patients receiving medical assistance in dying MAiD*
 
Two family/primary support person(s) or family caregivers are welcomed:
  • Children under 18 admitted to hospital.
  • Patients in intensive care units and critically ill patients in emergency departments
  • Patients in labour and giving birth
 
One family/primary support person or family caregivers are welcomed:
  • Children under 18 in outpatient settings
  • Hospital inpatients*
  • Patients in emergency departments
  • Prenatal visits, including ultrasounds
  • Ambulatory care clinics, appointments or procedures
* Please note, hospital inpatients are asked to identify three support people per week. These three designated support people may visit each day, but only one will be permitted to visit at a time
 
Palliative patients and others nearing end of life may identify a maximum of five designated support people. Three of these five designated support people may visit each day and can visit at the same time where space permits.
 
If you have questions about these exceptions, please talk to your care team.
 
If you feel unwell or have felt unwell in the past 48 hours (fever/chills/sweats, new or worsening cough or sore throat, runny nose, headache or shortness of breath), are supposed to be self-isolating due to travel, or are waiting for results of COVID-19 test results, please do not visit.

Important information for family caregivers, primary support people

Visitor restrictions are in place at all Nova Scotia Health hospitals to protect our vulnerable patients and staff and limit the spread of COVID-19. We understand how difficult these restrictions are for patients and families and how important it is to have loved ones present while a patient is in the hospital. We are easing restrictions gradually to allow more opportunities for family caregivers/primary support persons to support patients in hospital where it is feasible and safe to do so within public health guidelines.
 

The following measures will help ensure patient, staff and visitor safety. All primary support person/family caregivers must:

  • be feeling well at the date and time of the visit
  • be screened upon entry - anyone with symptoms consistent with COVID-19, on self-isolation or being tested for COVID-19 due to recent travel or potential exposure to the virus will not be permitted to enter
  • wear a medical mask covering their nose and mouth at all times
  • maintain a physical distance of two metres (six feet) from staff and others, except your loved one
  • wash their hands when entering and leaving the hospital and when entering and leaving the patient’s room
  • go directly to and from the patient’s room, or visit location, and remain there for the duration of the visit
Family caregivers/designated support people are strongly encouraged to have weekly asymptomatic testing for COVID-19.
Families are encouraged to have as much consistency as possible in designated support person present with a patient throughout the week.
Procedures may vary by site and inpatient unit. If you have questions or concerns please speak with the care team or contact Patient Relations at 1-844-884-4177.
 
Thank you for your patience and cooperation.
 
 
Designated caregivers can watch this instructional video to learn what to expect when visiting long-term care facilities.
 
If you have questions or concerns please speak with the care team or contact Patient Relations at 1-844-884-4177 or review Visiting patients in hospital: Frequently Asked Questions.