Guidelines for Primary Supports and Visitors
The University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics supports a patient and family centered approach to care. This means that you can help us plan your care. As part of planning your care we will ask you to tell us which people closest to you can provide you with support during your stay. Most patients and families need help and support. Needs may vary from person to person.
We have defined two types of people that may be with you during your stay. Primary Support Persons are the couple of people you are closest to. Visitors are guests of you and your family.
Who are Primary Support Persons?
- People who provide you with the support you need
- Your support persons may include
- Best friends
- A partner
Who are Visitors?
- They are guests of you or your family.
- They may only visit at certain times during the day.
How Do I Designate Who my Primary Support Persons Are?
- Your primary nurse will review the Primary Support and Visitor Guidelines with you.
- At any time during your hospital stay, you may tell us who your primary support people are. Most often, this will include a small number of people.
- You are free to change your primary support persons at any time.
- We will make sure you have quiet time for rest and privacy. We will help you balance your need for support and your need for rest.
When are visiting hours?
- Items of value should not be brought to the hospital. Only bring items that are needed, like glasses or hearing aids. The hospital is not responsible for lost or misplaced items.
- If the people who come to see you need a place to spend the night, they can call the Housing Coordinator at 263-0315 for help in finding a local hotel.
How are Badges Obtained?
Our goal is to provide a safe environment. One way to ensure this is to give after hour badges to those people who have been granted permission to stay after 9 pm. Primary support persons and visitors must obtain an ID badge in order to stay after hours.
- Primary Support
- To get an ID badge, primary support persons must receive a card from the unit staff. The card is then taken to the Security Office found near the Main Entrance of the hospital. This must be done before 9 pm.
- The badge will be valid for one week. It may be used until the date printed on the badge.
- Visitors who have been given permission to visit after hours must also go to the Security Office found near the Main Entrance of the hospital to obtain a badge. This must be done before 9 pm.
- These badges are valid only for one night.
Who Should Not Visit?
There are times when people should not visit you in the hospital.
- If the visitor or primary support has been exposed to an infection or illness
- Active tuberculosis
- Acute respiratory illness
- Pertussis (whooping cough)
- Certain skin infections
People who have been exposed to these illnesses should check with their doctor to see if they can get or spread the illness. If so, they should not come to visit for three weeks from the time they were exposed. For any health condition where the safety of visiting is uncertain, they should check with their doctor or your nurse.
- If you decide that you do not want people to visit at a certain time
- If you no longer wish to visit with a certain person
For the Psychiatric Unit:
- Primary supports should talk with the nursing staff as early in the day as they can if they would like to spend the night. If the primary nurse decides that this will be allowed, one adult primary support may spend the night in the patient's room.
The Spanish version of this Health Facts for You is #7211.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 07/26/2011
Copyright © 01/25/2011 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#6608
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