OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Kaiser Permanente is restricting its visitor policies at all Northern California hospitals to prevent the spread of COVID-19, officials said Wednesday.

Starting Wednesday, no visitors will be allowed inside any NorCal Kaiser hospitals except under the following circumstances:

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  • During end-of-life care (limited to one visitor at a time unless a special arrangement is made)
  • For labor and delivery, postpartum and Pediatric Units, including the pediatric and neonatal ICUs (only one visitor over the age of 14 who does not have any evidence of cough, cold, or illness, will be allowed. All other family members and visitors will be asked not to participate in visitation in the hospital until further notice)
  • Drivers for patients arriving for surgeries or procedures will be allowed to enter with the patient and provide contact information but will be asked to leave until the patient is ready to be discharged.
  • An adult caretaker (18 years or older) of someone with cognitive or physical disabilities who requires assistance, or to provide language assistance if interpretive services cannot suffice, will be allowed

In medical offices, only one essential caregiver can accompany a patient, such as a support for a minor or for people with cognitive/physical disabilities who need assistance. Someone who can assist with language may also accompany a patient.

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“Kaiser Permanente is taking these steps, and others that support social distancing and safety, to ensure we can continue to provide the high-quality care our members need while protecting our staff employees, physicians, members, patients, and the public,” said Michelle Gaskill-Hames, Senior Vice President of Health Plan and Hospital Operations for Kaiser NorCal.

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Kaiser is asking that anyone with a cough, fever or any other illness refrain from entering any hospital or medical office unless they are there to receive medical care. Each facility will have greeters at the entrance to screen people for respiratory symptoms and to provide directions so they get the appropriate level of care.