ChristianaCare says it wants proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test in order to visit loved ones in its hospitals.
Delaware’s largest health system announced the new visitation policy that went into effect Monday late last week.
ChristianaCare is requiring visitors to provide either proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test not older than 72 hours to be allowed entry into the hospital.
It is also adding new limits on visitor hours as well as on the number of visitors allowed per patient. Those rules vary depending on the nature of the hospital stay. Patients in Labor and Delivery or the NICU are allowed two visitors.
ChristianaCare also continues its COVID screenings and mask wearing at all times.
In a statement, ChristianaCare chief operating officer Sharon Kurfuerst said the move was in response to the increased spread of the virus and its Delta variant. The health system did not make a spokesperson available for further comment.
Most health providers in the state have visitation limitations in place and other precautions because of COVID, but ChristianaCare is the first to require proof of vaccinations.
Spokespeople for Beebe Healthcare, Nemours, Trinity Health which operates St. Francis in Wilmington and Bayhealth have each told Delaware Public Media visitation policies are under review and can change at any time.
ChristianaCare, Nemours and Trinity Health are all requiring their staff to get the vaccine.
As of Monday there are 188 COVID hospitalizations statewide.