March 28, 2020
The mission of Calvary Hospital is to care for the medical, emotional, and spiritual needs of our adult patients with advanced cancer and other life-limiting illnesses. Out of respect for these unique needs, Calvary has a long history of allowing people to visit our patients as freely as possible.
During this pandemic, we regret that we must temporarily change our visiting policy. The Department of Health now requires all hospitals in New York to stop allowing nearly all visitors. As we balance our mission to take great care of our patients with the burdens of this pandemic, we have changed our guidelines:
1) “Critical” status only. In-person visits are allowed ONLY for patients with “critical” status (imminently dying). We recommend telephone and video visits instead of in-person visits.
2) Visiting hours. In-person visits are allowed from 11:00am until 8:00pm.
3) 1-visitor maximum. Only one visitor may visit the patient at a time.
4) Entrance screening. We ask all visitors about their COVID-19 status, and we take the temperature of all visitors. We will provide every visitor a face mask to wear during the visit.
5) No visiting after death. Due to Health Department requirements, no visitors are allowed after a patient has died.
Calvary is committed to helping with the personal and spiritual needs of our entire community to the extent allowed by law. If you have questions, or if we can help in any way, please call 718-518-2000.
If you would like support with a remote visit by phone or video, please call 718-518-2365. Feel free to leave tablets or smartphones with patients to use for video chats; our in-house WiFi is fast and free.
If you have COVID-19, or if you have reason to suspect that you might have it, we respectfully ask that you do not visit in person. If you have questions about whether your health status would affect your ability to visit in person, please call 718-518-2000.
Calvary has been screening all patients, visitors, and staff upon arrival to the Bronx and Brooklyn campuses. There has been no disruption to patient care. Calvary reserves the right to deny entrance to any staff or visitor whom we feel could pose a health risk to the hospital community.
We recognize that these new limits add one more burden to the already complicated lives of our patients and the people who want to visit. We apologize to those who have been affected by these changes, and we promise we will do everything we can to return to our traditional policy of maximizing access to visitors as soon as possible.
Calvary is now coordinating with our healthcare partners throughout the New York City area to determine how our special expertise may be used to help hospitals throughout the region provide essential medical care not related to COVID-19. Calvary’s medical and nursing staff are experts in providing palliative care to patients with advanced cancer and other advanced medical illnesses. We will continue to work with hospitals throughout the area to continue to provide our expert care to their patients in this time of need.
On behalf of the entire Calvary community,
Robert M. Siegel, MD