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Sparrow limits patient visitors to one in wake of omicron spread

Sparrow Hospital
WKAR File Photo
WKAR File Photo
Starting Tuesday, only one visitor per day will be allowed to see patients at Sparrow Health System.

As omicron transmission rates rise, Sparrow Health System is modifying its visitor policy to contain the spread.

Starting Tuesday, only one visitor will be allowed per patient each day, down from the current maximum of two.

The new policy follows an increase in the number of Sparrow caregivers who themselves have tested positive for COVID-19.

Chief Nursing Officer Amy Brown says right now, that’s about 200 staff members.

“That significantly impacts the ability to take care of patients as well, because we plan on a certain number and on any given shift, you know, it’s reduced because of the number of caregivers,” Brown said.

Brown says she herself had to quarantine for 10 days last October. She says it was a necessary inconvenience.

“That’s kind of what we’re telling our caregivers as well, is that first of all, we want to get you better, and second of all, we want to be cautious when you come back to make sure that we don’t further increase the spread,” Brown said.

Visitors are required to wear a mask indoors at all Sparrow locations.

Brown says they’re trying to create more opportunities for phone calls and video visits between patients and their loved ones. She added that the number of visitors allowed to see end-of-life patients will be dealt with on a case by case basis.

Kevin Lavery is a general assignment reporter and occasional local host for Morning Edition and All Things considered.
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