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Hospital visitors

Protect our most vulnerableHospital Visitors Direction (No. 5)

This content was last updated on 10 July.

The restrictions on hospital visitors have been eased, with the risk of COVID-19 being balanced against the needs of patients.

Up to two visitors can see a patient in hospital at any one time, for any length of time, within visiting hours. More than two visitors continue to be allowed to provide end-of-life support to a patient.

It is recommended that you contact the hospital directly to confirm their visitation rules and visiting hours, before leaving home.

Each hospital and even wards within hospitals can make decisions around visiting that are in the best interest of the patient. These decisions are based on clinical risk and may change depending on the situation at the time. Please respect each hospital’s visitor rules.

You can protect yourself and others by following this advice, and by:

  • practising social distancing, keeping two big steps between yourself and other people
  • using good hygiene, washing your hands with soap and water, or alcohol-based sanitiser.

For more detail, including details of all special circumstances, read the Hospital visitors direction (No. 5).

Questions and Answers about this Direction

In line with the easing of coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, the Queensland Government has updated the rules around visiting hospitals.

Can I visit a patient in hospital?

Yes. Hospital patients can have two visitors at any one time, for any length of time, within visiting hours. More than two visitors continue to be allowed to provide end-of-life support to a patient.

It is important to know that hospitals may have their own rules for visiting patients. It is recommended that you contact the hospital directly to confirm visitation rules before attending the hospital.

People may not visit a patient, if they:

  • have been asked to self-quarantine, for example due to travel overseas or interstate
  • have returned from overseas in the last 14 days
  • have been diagnosed with coronavirus (COVID-19) and are self-isolating
  • have had close contact with a person who has novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the last 14 days
  • are unwell, particularly with a fever (37.5 degrees or more), cough, sore throat or shortness of breath.
 

What if the patient is nearing their end-of-life?

More than two visitors continue to be allowed to provide end of life support at all times. Please discuss this with the patient’s treating team.

 

Can a person under the age of 16 visit a patient in hospital?

Yes. A person under the age of 16 can visit a hospital patient, but you will need to discuss this with the patient’s treating team and that person will need to meet all the other requirements for visitors.

 

Can anyone visit a patient in hospital?

No, you won’t be able to visit a patient in hospital if you:

  • have been asked to quarantine, for example due to travel overseas or interstate

  • have been diagnosed with coronavirus (COVID-19) and are self-isolating

  • have had close contact with a person who has novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the last 14 days

  • are unwell, particularly with a fever (37.5 degrees or more), cough, sore throat or shortness of breath - are under the age of 16.

 

Who cannot visit a patient in hospital?

You will not be able to visit a patient in hospital if you:

  • have been asked to self-quarantine, for example due to travel overseas or interstate
  • have been diagnosed with coronavirus (COVID-19) and are self-isolating
  • have had close contact with a person who has novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the last 14 days
  • are unwell, particularly with a fever (37.5 degrees or more), cough, sore throat or shortness of breath.
 

Can I visit someone with COVID-19?

You will not be able to visit a patient with COVID-19. If end-of-life support is required, you will need to discuss this with the patient’s treating team.

 

I’m pregnant. How many people can I have with me during my labour?

You can have two people with you during your labour. This includes a patient’s partner and/or support person/s. There is no limit on how long these visitors can stay.

Example: A pregnant patient’s partner and the patient’s support person may visit at the same time during the patient’s labour.

As some hospitals will have their own visitation rules to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, it is always best to check with your hospital ahead of time.

 

Can my other children visit me and the baby in hospital?

Yes, but they will count as one of your two visitors. Your children can take turns with other adult friends or family members to visit immediately after the birth.

It is important to know that hospitals may have their own rules for visiting patients. It is recommended that you contact the hospital directly to confirm visitation rules before attending the hospital.

 

How many visitors can I have in hospital once my baby is born?

Up to two people may be with you at the same time, including your partner and/or a support person/s. There is no limit on how long these visitors may stay with you. It is important to know the hospital you are at may have changed their rules about who can come and visit you and your baby, and when they are allowed to come. Check with your hospital about what is allowed.

 

I am having elective surgery and would like someone to be with me at the hospital, is this allowed?

Yes, you can have a visitor or support person with you at the hospital. You can have two visitors at any one time, for any length of time, within visiting hours.

 

Will visitation rules differ across hospitals and regions?

This direction applies to all hospitals across all regions in Queensland. Some hospitals and even wards within hospitals will have different rules regarding visiting patients. These decisions are based on clinical risk and may change depending on the situation such as the number of cases in the community, a visitor’s travel history and whether the patient is a vulnerable patient or not.

Visiting hours may also differ across hospitals.

 

Does this Direction relate to health professionals or hospital workers too?

No, this direction is for a person visiting a patient who is not:

  • an employee or contractor of the hospital

  • a person providing health, medical or pharmaceutical goods or services to a patient

  • a person providing goods or services that are necessary for the effective operation of the hospital

  • a person required for the purposes of emergency management or law enforcement.

However, any person (other than a patient of the hospital) must not enter a hospital if they are prohibited from doing so, including if they are unwell, subject to a self-quarantine requirement or have been overseas in the last 14 days.

 

Are there penalties if I don’t comply?

Yes. If you don’t comply you may be fined up to $1,330 for individuals and $6,670 for corporations under the Public Health Act 2005.

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Questions and Requests for exemptions

If you are seeking clarification on a Direction or have any questions, please call 134 COVID (13 42 68).

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