As numbers of positive COVID-19 cases in Berkshire County and around the country continue to rise, healthcare facilities everywhere are adjusting policies to control the spread and that includes Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield.

In a press release, BMC says it continues to provide safe, comprehensive patient care services, both inpatient and outpatient, and these new visitation restrictions are designed to help maintain a safe environment for BMC staff and patients.

The guidelines now include:

• Medical/Surgical, Critical Care, Progressive Care, Behavioral Health, Rehab, Family Birth Center and Pediatrics: No visitation.

• Emergency Department: No visitors in the department, including the lobby.

• End-of-Life Circumstances: Based on individual circumstances.

 • Ambulatory surgery/Endoscopy/Crane Center: A companion can drop off patient, leave the building and return to pick up patient and receive discharge instructions if needed.

• No visitation for patients suspected of or testing positive for COVID-19.

There are certain exceptions for designated support persons, such as: one birth partner; one parent of a child 18 or younger at a time; one designated support person for patients with intellectual, cognitive, or physical disabilities; one attorney; end-of-life companion in approved circumstances.

All designated support persons are required to follow the following guidelines: Only enter through the main entrance or emergency department; be screened for COVID-19 symptoms and exposure; sign in, show ID and be given a visitor badge; always wear a mask; must go directly to the patient’s room; perform hand hygiene before entering and upon leaving the patient’s room; remain in the patient’s room during their entire visit; always maintain a 6-foot distance from the patient, if possible; and do not eat or drink in the patient’s room.

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