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Geisinger becomes the first member of Risant Health

DANVILLE, Pa. – It’s important to keep our patients safe at all Geisinger hospitals. That’s why we’re taking steps to protect our patients, staff and the community from COVID-19 by temporarily restricting routine, in-person visits to hospitalized patients, effective Monday, Nov. 2 until further notice. 

We understand it can be difficult being apart from a family member when they’re in the hospital, and having that connection is important. Family and friends are encouraged to find alternatives ways of visiting, such as phone calls, Facetime, Skype and other means when possible. We provide iPads to family members to help make communicating with them even easier. 

Clergy and doulas are part of the care team and not considered visitors.

Visitation for outpatient procedures, diagnostics and clinic appointments remains the same. Adult or pediatric patients who have an appointment at a Geisinger clinic, laboratory or radiology department may have one person accompany them, if necessary.

Exceptions noted here will still allow for visitation under special situations:

  • Patients who are medically unstable (two designated visitors)
  • All patients who are imminently dying (within hours to days), but who are not positive for or suspected to have COVID-19 (two visitors)
  • One-time “substitution” with two other visitors is permitted.
  • Visits should ideally be between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Patients undergoing surgery or procedures (one single-time visitor immediately after the procedure)
  • Delivering mothers (one support person)
  • Patients who are minors and those with limited decisional capacity (up to two parents or guardians)
  • Patients who have altered mental status, an intellectual, developmental or cognitive disability or a communication barrier (two visitors)
  • Patients with disruptive behavior where a family member is key to their care (two visitors)
  • Emergency Room patients (no visitors, with some exceptions as noted):
    • Patients who are medically unstable (one visitor, at provider’s discretion)
    • Patients who are at end of life (two visitors)
    • Patients who are minors and those with limited decisional capacity (up to two parents or guardians)
    • Patients who have altered mental status or developmental delays and caregiver provides safety (one visitor)
    • Patients with disruptive behavior, where a family member is key to their care (one visitor)
    • Alerted patients (e.g., STEMI, stroke, trauma) (one visitor)
  • Patients being discharged (one visitor to help with discharge planning)

COVID-19-unit patient visitation criteria:

  • COVID-positive or persons under investigation (PUI) end-of-life patients (medically unstable or imminently dying) may have: 
  • Two designated, unchanging visitors who may not switch out with other people
  • One-time visit from families (but allowed a second visit if death is imminent)

All approved visitors must:

  • Be 18 years of age or older and in good health
  • Bring a form of identification
  • Not have symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, recent loss of taste or smell or flu-like illness suggestive of COVID-19, and complete a health screening, including a temperature
  • check, at the entrance before entry
  • Not have active COVID-19 infection
  • Be at least 10 days from onset of illness if they previously had COVID-19 infection
  • Respect social distancing guidelines of 6 feet from all others
  • Wash hands with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer before entering and after leaving a patient’s room
  • Use the same entrance for entry into and exit from the hospital
  • Identify themselves and stay in designated areas (not travel throughout the facility)
  • Wear a Level 1 mask or their own close-fitting cloth masks at all times (gaiters are acceptable, but bandannas and other loose cloths are not) and cover tracheostomies (e.g., with cloth, gauze, a second mask)
  • Masking for visitors is mandatory at all times in all Geisinger buildings. Any visitor who doesn’t comply may lose future visitation privileges.

To find out more information about Geisinger’s visitation policy and how we’re working to keep our communities safe and stop the spread of COVID-19, visit

About Geisinger
Geisinger is among the nation’s leading providers of value-based care, serving 1.2 million people in urban and rural communities across Pennsylvania. Founded in 1915 by philanthropist Abigail Geisinger, the non-profit system generates $10 billion in annual revenues across 134 care sites - including 10 hospital campuses, and Geisinger Health Plan, with 600,000 members in commercial and government plans. The Geisinger College of Health Sciences educates more than 5,000 medical professionals annually and conducts more than 1,400 clinical research studies. With 26,000 employees, including 1,600 employed physicians, Geisinger is among Pennsylvania’s largest employers with an estimated economic impact of $14 billion to the state’s economy. On March 31, 2024, Geisinger became the first member of Risant Health, a new nonprofit charitable organization created to expand and accelerate value-based care across the country.  Learn more at or connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and X.

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