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Southwell announces updated visitor guidelines
Southwell announced today that as of June 17, visitor guidelines for the health system have been updated. Prior to today’s update, the visitation guidelines restricted visitors from most areas.

“There is nothing I want more than to allow families to be together and support one another while in our care. I am pleased to announce that we are confident we can slightly relax our current guidelines,” says Christopher K. Dorman, President and CEO for Southwell.

Limited visitation hours are now available from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. at Tift Regional Medical Center (TRMC) in Tifton and Southwell Medical in Adel. Each patient is allowed one visitor per day. For the TRMC Intensive Care Unit, visits are limited to one hour. The health system continues to enforce no minor visitors under the age of 18, including in the TRMC Women’s Center, as well as no visitors at the Sylvia Barr Center geriatric psychiatric unit. The TRMC Emergency Department will not allow visitors, unless they are considered an essential visitor.

Essential visitors are defined as those with a pediatric patient under the age of 18 (one parent), a visitor responsible to provide healthcare decision-making choices, or a visitor helping with communication and/or mobility.

Other aspects of the updated guidelines include patients in hospice, palliative, pediatric units and birth centers, who may have one visitor overnight. Visitors are to remain in the patient room while in the hospital. Once the visitor leaves the premises, the patient may not have another visitor until the following day. Visitation is limited to an immediate family member, including but not limited to a spouse, domestic partner, or another family member.

No visitors are allowed at Southwell Health and Rehabilitation (SWHR) in Adel unless an exception is made for compassionate care situations, such as end of life. “Family and loved ones who have a resident living at Southwell Health and Rehabilitation are encouraged to call 229-896-8157 for communication and visitation alternatives. We encourage residents and visitors to stay connected,” says Dr. John Law, administrator for SWHR.

For clinic and outpatient departments, one visitor per patient is allowed in the clinic and outpatient setting. Visitors will not be permitted for confirmed COVID-19 patients and those patients being screened and awaiting COVID-19 test results. Flower, gift and food deliveries are also suspended.

Visitors access TRMC through the 20th Street Lobby and/or the Emergency Department. For all locations, screeners at public entrances will continue to ask basic health questions including temperature monitoring. Screeners will also guide those seeking treatment to the appropriate location while assisting essential visitors as needed. Individuals with any of the following symptoms will not be allowed to visit the patient: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea. All visitors must properly wear a mask while at any Southwell facility.

“We recognize that support from friends and family can play a positive role in the healing process. We encourage all friends and family to utilize other forms of communication including phone and video calls on cell phones and mobile devices. If needed, friends and family can always contact a TRMC in-patient advocate,” says Dorman. Family and friends can reach the second floor patient representative at (229) 520-2629, third floor patient representative at (229) 402-2826, or the concierge line at (229) 353-2273.