Lexington hospitals change visitor restrictions due to rising COVID-19 cases

Published: Aug. 12, 2021 at 11:09 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Earlier this month, Baptist Health Lexington put new visitor restrictions in place because of the rise in COVID-19 numbers. Over the next few days, the other major hospitals in Lexington will join them.

A release from UK HealthCare said their new policy, which starts Friday, includes Chandler Hospital, Kentucky Children’s Hospital and most of their other buildings.

Basically, it allows one visitor at a time for patients 18 or older who are non-Covid patients. Children are allowed one or two parent or legal guardians. Some areas, like the emergency room and surgery waiting area, do allow two visitors

On August 2, Baptist Health took their visitor restrictions back to what they were during the height of the pandemic. That meant only one family member or support person for inpatients, no one under the age of 18 allowed to visit, and no visitors for COVID-19 patients.

They tell us that they are starting to see patients numbers in the 40s and 50s, and those rising numbers are starting to have an impact on other areas of the hospital.

“We are at maximum capacity for beds,” said Dr. James Borders, Baptist Health. “Staffing is a challenge for all area hospitals which is really what it sets the limit for our bed capacity more than physical allocations and so, you know, we’ve had to take a hard look at our elective surgeries again and our medical staff is aware of the fact that we’re requesting that elective procedures be postponed if at all possible.”

We’ve also heard from Saint Joseph health regarding updates their policies that start on Monday. They’re also cutting down to one visitor for most patients and no visitors for people in the hospital with COVID-19.

UK HealthCare told us from beginning of the pandemic they’ve admitted 10 total children. Four of those cases have been within the past two weeks.

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