Visiting ICU Patients

Our hospitals have several ICU units, depending on the patient's medical needs. When you visit, please check with the front desk to find out the patient's room number.

Guidelines for Families and Visitors

  • The doors to our hospitals' ICU units are locked. Please use the phone outside the doors each time you visit to see if visiting is allowed. Sometimes people are asked to wait due to tests, procedures, or issues needing privacy.
  • Limit visitors to two at a time because of limited space in the patient rooms. At times visits may need to be limited to 10 minutes due to a patient’s condition.
  • Children under 12 are not allowed in the ICU.
  • We ask that the family appoint a "main" spokesperson so that every time loved ones call to see how the patient is doing we can refer them to this person. This helps the nurse focus on patient care instead of having to leave the patient to answer calls.
  • The staff cannot give out any personal information, and we cannot share information from the medical record.
  • Please do not eat or bring food into patient’s room; drinks are acceptable.
  • No flowers or plants (standing water breeds germs).
  • Please turn off cell phones before entering an ICU. You can use them in the halls or lobby outside of the unit.
  • Please provide the nurse with the family's contact information -- cell phone, hotel phone numbers, etc.
  • Feel free to ask questions.
  • You will be asked to leave during shift change, between 7 and 8 a.m. and p.m. This allows the nurses to exchange information and do an assessment.
  • It is OK to help your loved one to wash, reposition, and eat.
  • It may be helpful to bring magazines, CD players, and pictures from home.
  • Patients in an ICU are connected to a heart monitor (EKG) and an oxygen monitor. Depending on the patient's condition, there may be many other types of equipment and monitors that the nurse can explain to you.
  • Don’t be alarmed if your loved one seems confused or "foggy." Often people are taking strong medication or sedation. It's not unusual for people to have poor concentration or frequent forgetfulness.
  • Patients in the ICU may have many doctors, who make rounds throughout the day. It's hard to predict when the doctor will come. It can be helpful to leave a message with a phone number for the doctor to call you.
  • It's hard to predict how long a patient will be in the ICU. When the doctor is confident the patient does not need our care, they will be transferred to another floor.