Ensuring the health and safety of our patients and staff is our top priority as we continue to meet the challenges presented by COVID-19. Limiting the number of people in our facilities is one of our most important safeguards. To maintain proper social distancing and comply with New York Department of Health regulations, we must limit the number of visitors.
Please note that our visitor policy for inpatients and outpatients may change abruptly at any time, depending on the severity of the pandemic.
For everyone’s safety and convenience, visitors should register one day in advance using the visitor registration form. All visitors must be at least 18 years old.
In-person visitors are only allowed in the following circumstances:
- Inpatients at Memorial Hospital or the David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care will be allowed one visitor per day between the hours of either 9:00 am and noon or 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm. Rotating more than one visitor during these hours is not permitted.
- Patients admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Memorial Hospital will be allowed a maximum of two visitors per day between the hours of 11:00 am and 7:00 pm. Only one visitor is allowed at the bedside at a time. Visitors can switch out once per day, but any visitor who is not in a patient’s room must exit the hospital. Waiting in the hallway, cafeteria or lobby is not allowed.
- Inpatients on floors M7, M8, M12, and M14 will be permitted one visitor per day between the hours of either 9:00 am and noon or 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm. Visitors may visit for three days in a row, and can only switch once every three days.
- Visitors are required to wear the mask provided to them during their entire visit, including while inside patient rooms.
- Visitors must go directly to a patient room – they are not permitted in any other parts of our facilities. If a hospitalized patient is having surgery, visitors may see the patient when they return to their room, during visiting hours. Visitors are not allowed in the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU or recovery room).
- All visitors should enter at the Main Entrance at 1275 York Avenue, where they must check in.
- Patients at the end-of-life will be permitted to have two visitors at the same time, with the ability to swap or exchange visitors at 60-minute intervals throughout the day. End of life visitation may be different on some floors; please ask a nurse about the policy on the floor you’re planning to visit.
- Visitation will not be permitted for patients who test newly positive for COVID-19 upon admission or during inpatient surveillance testing, until 10 days after the initial positive test.
- At this time, we are not able to permit visitors for patients receiving infusion (including chemotherapy), radiation therapy, and all diagnostic services.
- Patients undergoing endoscopic and interventional radiological procedures, as well as patients undergoing surgeries, will be able to have one person accompany them.
- Approved visitors will be permitted to stay with the patient during the pre-procedure period and may rejoin the patient at the time of discharge. Visitors must exit the building while the patient is undergoing the procedure and during the recovery period. Visitors are not allowed in the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU).
- Patients who have an appointment with their doctor, nurse practitioner, physician assistant, or clinic nurse will be allowed to have one person accompany them during their appointment.
- If the patient has other appointments that day where visitors are not allowed, visitors must exit the building as directed by staff.
- Due to a rising number of COVID cases in the region, we are not able to allow visitors to accompany patients inside our Urgent Care Center (UCC) and Clinical Decision Unit (CDU) at our main hospital at 1275 York Avenue as well as in our Symptom Care Clinics (SCC) in all MSK locations.
- For outpatients who are newly diagnosed with COVID-19, and are onsite in isolation, visitors are not permitted while the patient is in isolation.
- Pediatric patients are permitted to have one parent or caregiver with them for outpatient appointments and at the bedside during admission to the hospital. No additional family members, including siblings, or any other visitors are allowed in the hospital.
- Patients without a parent or caregiver at the bedside will be allowed one visitor from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm daily. All patients and accompanying caregivers will undergo a COVID swab test prior to admission, as well as every Monday and Thursday throughout the inpatient stay. Caregivers are allowed to switch on Mondays and Thursdays, when the Department of Pediatrics does COVID-19 tests.
What to Know Before Coming to MSK
In keeping with New York State travel guidelines, MSK is not permitting visitors to visit or accompany patients at any of our facilities if they are arriving from or in the last 10 days have traveled to states other than those that border New York (Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Vermont), except in special circumstances.
All visitors will be screened for recent travel, exposure to COVID-19, and symptoms (a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, body aches, chills, or new loss of sense of taste or smell). If the visitor has any of these symptoms, they will not be allowed to visit.
All patients, staff, and visitors must wear masks at MSK clinical locations. An MSK staff member will give you a mask when you arrive. Please wear that mask at all times.
For patients with appointments at Memorial Hospital, please use the entrance at 1275 York Avenue between 67th and 68th Streets.
For patients who need help getting out of the car and into the building, an MSK staff member will be able to meet and assist them.
We appreciate your understanding as we continue to make adjustments to our policies and procedures to protect our patients and staff.
Virtual Visitor Program
We understand how important it is for your loved ones to be together when facing cancer, and we’re here to help. Whether your loved one is admitted to the hospital or coming in for an outpatient appointment, we have ways to keep you connected.
Caregivers and loved ones can use technology to stay in touch, and we will assist in facilitating those virtual connections. Please feel free to bring a personal device with you to connect with caregivers and loved ones during your appointment and while you are in our care. If you’re new to using technology to keep in contact, we’ve put together some information about how to use common apps to get you started.
For patients at our MSK locations, we have tablets and phones available for use along with staff to help you use them. Patients receiving treatment in our outpatient locations can use the technology in our treatment rooms to video chat with their loved ones during appointments.