Stanford hospitals to require full vaccination or negative COVID-19 test for visitors

Aug. 12, 2021, 4:55 p.m.

All hospital visitors will be required to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of a visit, Stanford Health Care announced Wednesday on its website. Vaccination must be received at least two weeks before visiting.

The guidelines comply with an Aug. 5 California Department of Public Health order that mandated vaccination checks and COVID-19 testing for all indoor visits. The health order officially went into effect Wednesday.

The state-wide announcement cited the “highly contagious and possibly more virulent” Delta variant, along with the recent increase in COVID-19 cases — the fastest of the entire pandemic (18.3 new cases per 100,000 people per day) — as factors contributing to the revamping of restrictions.

For proof of vaccination, individuals can present their physical vaccination card issued by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a photo of the card, documentation from a healthcare provider or information stored on a QR code.

Those who choose to take a COVID-19 test will use either PCR (polymerase chain reaction) or antigen testing, according to the California Health order. Both tests return results within one day.

“Stanford Health Care will allow no visitors to its emergency department, except those who are accompanying minors or patients in active labor, assisting patients with disability, or in case of life-threatening conditions,” Stanford Health Care added on their website bulletin. These visitors will not be required to present vaccination or negative COVID-19 test proof. More information about specific visits can be found on the Stanford Health Care website.

Stanford’s ValleyCare Clinic, which holds independent visitor guidelines, announced it will institute the same rules in accordance with the California order. Other hospital systems in the state, such as Kaiser Permanente, University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and Sutter Health, have also implemented the same policy.

Jack is a high school student in The Stanford Daily's Summer Journalism Workshop.

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