Personnel Policy and Procedure Effective Date: February 4th 2013
Policy Number KL12345 Ref. Number: 241
Reviewed: Annually Page 1 of 5
Title: Intensive Care Unit Visitation Policy
Scope: Any MPT Hospital employee, any trainees, any volunteers and independent contractors.
Policy Statement: It is the policy of MPT Hospital to Facilitate unrestricted access of hospitalized patients to a chosen support person (e.g., family member, friend, or trusted individual) who is integral to the provision of emotional and social support 24 hours a day, according to patient preference, unless the support person infringes on the rights of others and their safety, or it is medically or therapeutically contraindicated (The Joint Commission, 2011).
Ensure that the facility/unit has an approved written document (policy, procedure, or standard of care) for allowing the patients designated support person who may or may not be the patient’s surrogate decision maker or legally authorized representative to be at the bedside during the course of the patient’s stay, according to the patient’s wishes (Joint Commission, 2011).
It is the policy of MPT Hospital to ensure that they prohibit discrimination based on age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, sex, sexual orientation, and/or gender identity or expression (Joint Commission, 2011).
MPT Hospital ensures that there is an approved written practice document ( policy, procedure, or standard of care) for limiting visitors whose presence infringes on the rights of others and their safety or are medically or therapeutically contraindicated to support staff in negotiating visiting privileges (Joint Commission, 2011)
Purpose Ensure that MPT health care facility has policies and procedures that support unrestricted presence in the ICUs—ones that allow for the patient’s unrestricted contact with a desired support person while, at the same time, protecting the privacy of other patients and the safety of patients and staff.
Definitions of Unrestricted Visitation MPT Hospital defines unrestricted visitation as “approved written policy which allows patient’s designated support person- who may or may not be the patient’s surrogate decision maker or legally authorized representative to be at the bedside during the course of the patient’s stay, according to the patient’s wishes” (Joint Commission, 2011).
Unrestricted Visitation Standards
1. Families and other partners are welcomed 24 hours a day according to patient preference. (Sullivan, Russell, Richards, & Roland, 2001, p. 18).
2. When possible, at the beginning of the ICU experience, patients are asked to define their “family” and how they will be involved in care and decision making.(Sullivan et al 2001, p. 18)
3. At this time, patients identify designated representatives such as health care power of attorney or a health care proxy (Sullivan et al 2001 p. 18)
4. Patient preferences are documented in the paper or electronic record and communicated consistently and comprehensively to all involved in patient care across all settings (Sullivan et al 2001 p.18)
5. When the patient is unable to communicate and cannot designate who should be present, hospital staff makes the most appropriate decisions possible, taking into account the broadened definition of family as “partners in care.” (Sullivan et al 2001 p.18).
6. Patients, families, nurses, and other members of the health care team can reevaluate and modify the presence and participation of families based upon safety criteria. All such collaborative decisions will be documented in the patient’s record (Sullivan et al 2001