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Visitation Policies

The purpose of the policy is to create a supportive, caring, and healthy environment for patients while promoting optimal patient care.

It is the policy of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to allow MD Anderson patients to have visitors 24 hours per day without regard to race, color, national origin, ethnicity, religion, culture/cultural values, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity/expression.

Adult patients and parents/guardians for patients who are minors have the right to determine who may or may not visit (including, but not limited to, a spouse, a domestic partner (including a same-sex domestic partner), another family member, or a friend) and when such visits may occur. 

When necessary to protect the health and safety of patients, visitors, or workforce members, MD Anderson may limit or restrict visits.

Specific units and patient areas within MD Anderson may establish specific visitation policies and hours for their units/areas.

Visitation Guidelines

  • Primary visitation times for inpatient rooms are 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
  • Because many MD Anderson patients are especially susceptible to infection, individuals with (or recent exposure to) communicable illness, disease or infection should refrain from visiting patients.
  • Ambulatory patients may visit with guests in the waiting rooms located on each floor, in the cafeteria, or in the lobby areas between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. 
  • Visitors should be limited to no more than two visitors in a patient room between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m.

Overnight Visitors

  • One overnight visitor is allowed in a patient room.
  • Overnight stays by visitors are not permitted in the waiting rooms or lobby areas.
  • Children under the age of 18 years of age are not permitted to stay overnight.

Exceptions

The Clinical Administrative Director, RN manager, hospital administrator, nursing administrator or their designee may modify the open visitation policy for a specific patient care area when necessary to protect the health and safety of patients or visitors. Details of the modification will be posted using institutional signage standards and displayed in the affected areas.

Special circumstances requiring emergency guest accommodations are referred to the Evening/Night/Weekend Administrator.

Intensive Care Unit

Get details on visitation policies for the Intensive Care Unit (ICU)

Private Rooms

One adult visitor is permitted to remain overnight with those patients occupying private rooms.

Pediatric

Pediatric patients on G9W are permitted one adult overnight visitor. Overnight visitation privileges may be rescinded by written order from the attending physician or his designee.

Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU)

If a pediatric patient is admitted to the PACU, one parent/ legal guardian will be permitted to remain with the patient from the time of admission through discharge from the unit.

Visitation Policy for Children

Children under the age of 13 must be accompanied at all times by someone over 18 years of age. 

Regardless of their destination, all children must be screened for immunization status, general health, and recent exposure to communicable disease. Families entering MD Anderson with children will be directed to the nearest Information Desk for screening. A Welcome Center staff member will assist families in filling out the screening document and sign it. The screening record will be filed for future reference.

Children cleared for visitation must wear a Visitor’s Passport on their shirt and are permitted in the public and non-restricted areas of the hospital. If for some reason a child arrives at a unit or care center without a Visitor’s Passport, a nurse in that area will be responsible for screening the child.

Children who are not cleared will be asked to leave the institution. If the family disagrees with the request, Welcome Center staff will call UT Police for assistance. If UT Police believe a clinical opinion is necessary, the Director of Nursing on-call will be asked to determine if the child may visit. If the Director of Nursing on-call supports the Welcome Center staff decision, the family will be asked to remove the child.

Children are prohibited from visiting the following Ambulatory and Inpatient areas:

  • Infusion Therapy
  • Diagnostic Center
  • Fine Needle Aspiration Area
  • Emergency Center
  • Ambulatory Treatment Centers (ATC Bed, ATC Chair, ATC-Greenpark)
  • Medical Specialties Center
  • Hematology Center
  • Blood and Marrow Transplant Center
  • Bone Marrow Aspiration Center
  • Pheresis Area
  • Diagnostic Imaging
  • Operating Room
  • Day Surgery
  • Leukemia Service: G.10W, G.12W
  • BMT Service: G.11
  • Protected Environment: G.12E
  • Intensive Care Unit (ICU)

The Child Visitation Room provides a safe, supervised area for children when a family member is going to a restricted area. Children who do not pass the screening cannot be taken to the Child Visitation Room. All children in the visitation room must have a negative screen for recent illnesses, exposure to chickenpox or live vaccines.

If special permission is given for a child to visit a restricted area, they must be screened for recent polio vaccination. A child who has received oral polio vaccine within the past six weeks is prohibited from contact with immuno-suppressed patients.

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© 2014 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center