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LRH tightens visitor policy

December 09, 2021
LITTLETON — As the state continues to carry the highest number of COVID-positive cases nationwide, hospitals and funeral homes make daily adjustments to absorb the caseloads. Littleton Regional Hospital revised visitor policies once again last week, as the town's case numbers remain above 60.

All hospital patients, including new parents, are allowed no more than two visitors during their stay, said LRH officials. Such visitors must be predesignated and remain the same throughout the duration of each patient's stay. In addition, the hospital now issues unique passes for daily entry.

The latest round of policy changes went into effect last Friday at the critical access hospital and will remain fluid in the coming weeks. However, LRH retains a strict no-visitor policy for all COVID-positive patients in its care.

Children under the age of 18 are no longer allowed within the facility. The only exceptions made are for pediatric patients with existing appointments. While both parents may accompany their child, siblings are not allowed and childcare arrangements are strongly encouraged.

One other adult may accompany outpatient service recipients. Services include all physician practices, Littleton Urgent Care, The Doorway and the emergency room. Likewise, patients with laboratory, rehabilitation and surgical appointments can bring one other adult.

End-of-life care remains on a case-by-case basis, as determined by the attending physician. Virtual services remain an alternative for many outpatient services.

Anyone entering the critical access hospital must undergo prior COVID screening and remain masked at all times while within the facility. Anyone presenting coronavirus symptoms will be redirected to LRH's Emergency Department Respiratory Triage Area (ERTA), added hospital officials.

New Hampshire saw a 24 percent increase in COVID-positive cases in the last two weeks, catapulting the state to the top of the New York Times list of high-risk areas, followed closely by Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, Rhode Island and Vermont.

Approximately 65 percent of New Hampshire residents are now fully vaccinated, while 89 percent have received at least one dose. Despite those percentages, the state continued breaking daily case number records throughout the last week, with a daily average of 1,096 cases and 398 hospitalizations reported on Saturday, Dec 4.

Martin Lord Osman
Salmon Press
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Littleon Food Coop
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