4/17/2023 at 9:00 AM

What is LVHN's hospital and outpatient visitation policy during COVID-19 outbreak?

During the COVID-19 crisis, we understand how difficult visitation restrictions may have been, but our efforts helped slow the spread of infection in our community.

Visitors who have a possible COVID infection, or who have tested positive for COVID, should not come into an LVHN facility unless they are seeking care for a severe illness or life-threatening condition.

In addition, those recently exposed to COVID-19 (within the past five days) also should avoid visitation.

Mask Policy Reminder

Face masks are optional in most areas at LVHN hospitals. There are circumstances and locations where masks will be required for patients and guests.

These include:

  • Anyone with a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis
  • Anyone with respiratory viral symptoms
  • Transplant donors and recipients
  • Patients and guests in Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute inpatient and outpatient locations
  • Patients receiving infusion therapy
  • NICU visitors
  • Inpatient psychiatric units

LVHN’s transitional skilled unit (TSU) at Lehigh Valley Hospital–17th Street must follow the rules and regulations established by the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Therefore, masking requirements will be clearly indicated on site and will be dependent upon the presence of active COVID-19 cases on the unit.

Hospital and Inpatient Visitation

In adult inpatient units, including all critical care, medical-surgical and low-level monitoring units:

  • Two visitors are allowed from 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
  • Children under 12 may not visit, except for children of patients in mother-baby and perinatal units and siblings of pediatric unit patients.
  • No visitors are allowed for patients with COVID-19, except for clergy and for patients who are at end-of-life.
  • Elevator capacity remains limited to allow for social distancing. Visitors must abide by the signage posted in each elevator.

Adult Emergency Rooms

Two visitors are allowed for an adult emergency room patient and those visitors must follow the same guidelines for masking and eating as the inpatient visitation rules noted above. If an emergency room patient is admitted and moved out of the emergency department, inpatient visitation rules apply. See Women's and Children's Units for information about Children's ER.

For Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute:

The updated policy applies to all Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute outpatient locations.

  • Two visitors are permitted to accompany patients in the areas below:
    • Physician practices
    • Radiation oncology physician appointments
    • Breast Health Services
    • Multidisciplinary clinics
    • Genetics
    • Hemophilia
    • Survivorship clinics
  • One visitor is permitted in our infusion areas.
  • Visitors are NOT permitted to eat or drink while with patients.
  • Children under age 12 may not visit.

Transitional Skilled Unit – Lehigh Valley Hospital–17th Street

  • Follows current PA Department of Health guidelines for visitation:
  • Patients will be provided the visitation guidelines at the time of admission to TSU.
  • Visitors must be 18 or older.

In women and children’s units:

Birthing Units:

  • Birthing triage:
    • Triage is where a pregnant or laboring mom will be evaluated prior to being admitted in labor. One designated support person is allowed and may stay with the patient in the triage area.
  • Labor and delivery:
    • One support person and one additional visitor at a time are allowed. Patients are only required to designate their support person, they are no longer required to designate a specific visitor. Given the nature of labor, visitation is allowable regardless of time of day at the discretion of clinical staff.
    • A doula is allowed.
    • In cases of patients with COVID-19, at the discretion of unit leadership and in collaboration with Infection Prevention, a single support person may be designated to stay with a patient continuously throughout their admission. Movement outside the patient’s room is not allowed. If the support partner leaves, they are not permitted back in the unit.
    • Children under age 12 may not visit.
    • During the second stage of labor and delivery (or the birth of the baby) a second support person is now allowed.
  • Obstetrical areas:
    • In mother-baby and perinatal units, one designated support individual and one additional visitor at a time are allowed from 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
    • Children of the patient, regardless of age, may visit with permission of unit leadership, but must be supervised by an adult other than the patient and remain in the room at all times.
    • From 8 p.m. to 9 a.m., only the support person is allowed.
    • A doula is allowed.
    • In cases of patients with COVID-19, at the discretion of unit leadership and in collaboration with Infection Prevention, a single support person may be designated to stay with a patient continuously throughout their admission. Movement outside the patient’s room is not allowed. If the support partner leaves, they are not permitted back in the unit.
  • Neonatal intensive care unit (NICU):
    • Parents/guardians may designate two support adults who may visit, one at a time, with a parent/guardian in attendance from 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
    • Bedside visitation is limited to two individuals at a time; one individual must be a parent/guardian.
    • Children under age 12 may not visit at this time.

Pediatric units:

  • Pediatric areas, including Children’s ER, pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) and pediatric inpatient unit:
    • Two parents/guardians may remain at the bedside at all times.
    • One additional designated support person is allowed at the bedside 9 a.m.-8 p.m.
    • Siblings may visit with permission of unit leadership but must be supervised by a parent and remain in the patient’s room at all times.

In behavioral health units:

  • No visitors are allowed on adult units.
  • One visitor per day is allowed on adolescent units.

Outpatient Appointment Information

For all outpatient appointments, one visitor is permitted to accompany a patient for an outpatient appointment, procedure, same-day surgery or LVPG office visit.

  • Visitors will wear a face mask at all times. A mask will be provided to those who arrive without one.
  • Visitors will be screened for symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Visitors are encouraged to maintain physical distancing when able.

Updated Visitation Policy for Clergy

Clergy are permitted to visit patients in LVHN hospitals. If clergy chooses to enter the room of a patient with confirmed or possible COVID-19, proper personal protective equipment (PPE) must be worn as directed by the nursing staff.

Hospital Visitor Screening

Masks are required and we request all visitors be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. If you arrive at a LVHN hospital location without your mask, one will be provided for you.

If you experience symptoms of COVID-19 or may have been exposed to someone who has it, you should take any of these steps to be screened:

Updated Surgery Waiting Room Policy.

In all LVHN surgery waiting rooms, two visitors are permitted per patient. Visitors are being seated at least six feet away from one another. Visitors are encouraged to use the EASE app, which sends real-time updates to loved ones. Visitors who drive patient for surgery are asked if they are willing to leave their phone number and go to another location so they can be called when the patient is ready for discharge.


Our hospital campus locations

Find helpful information specific to each hospital regarding parking, dining options and more.

Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)–Cedar Crest in Allentown

LVH–17th Street in Allentown

LVH–Carbon in Lehighton

LVH–Dickson City in Dickson City

LVH–Hazleton in Hazleton

LVH–Hecktown Oaks in Easton

LVH–Muhlenberg in Bethlehem

LVH–Pocono in East Stroudsburg

LVH–Schuylkill E. Norwegian Street and LVH–Schuylkill S. Jackson Street, both in Pottsville.

As neighbors and members of your communities, we are here to care for you and your family throughout life.

Helpful hospital information

Each hospital has its own information page on LVHN.org (links are listed above). We invite you to visit the hospital information page for specific local information, including:

  • Hospital address and contact information
  • Parking and valet details
  • Visitation information
  • Dining options
  • Descriptions of programs and services
  • How to send a card or flowers
  • Locations of our chapel and meditation areas

We are here for you

If you have additional questions or have a special request during your visit, please speak with any LVHN employee. We are here to help you.

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