The birthing center at Northern Hospital recently implemented a new policy related to visitors to the birthing unit to enhance the existing Infant Security System.
Under the new policy, each visitor older than age 18 will be required to exchange a photo ID (a driver’s license or state identification card) for a designated visitor badge. Visitors younger than 18 are not required to show identification but must be accompanied by an adult with a valid ID.
Visitors will check in upon arrival at the birthing center nursing desk located on the second floor. Here they will register with the nurse on duty for a visitor badge. The visitor badge will be issued with a valid ID that will be held at the nursing station until the visitor is ready to leave, upon which time the visitor will exchange their issued badge for the return of their ID.
The hospital is encouraging expectant moms and dads to make their family members aware of the need for identification in order to visit. Visitors will not be allowed to enter the unit without proper ID.
“With the times we are living in, it is imperative that we protect our most vulnerable patients, which are our mothers and babies. These stricter guidelines are just one way we are taking those extra steps of protection,” the hospital said in a written statement announcing the changes.
“It may seem unfair to send well-meaning visitors away, but folks have to understand our number one concern is mom and baby. We protect our patients like family. Would you want just anyone allowed to come knocking on your daughter’s hospital room door after she has given birth?” the hospital said.
With the new policy, the mother will be called in her room when a visitor arrives and she will decide if the visitor may come to her room. If she approves, that is when the visitor will surrender the ID and be issued a designated visitor badge.
There will be a limit of three visitors per mom at a time. Others will be asked to wait in the family waiting room located just outside the birthing center entrance, outside of the visitor elevators, on the second floor.
The policy is similar to a policy already in place in the hospital’s emergency department that only allows two visitors per patient.