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CDPH Updates Hospital Visitor Recommendations, Continues to Require Face Coverings for Visitors

For quality & patient safety staff, infection preventionists

This post has been archived and contains information that may be out of date.

With the state moving beyond the Blueprint for a Safer Economy as of June 15, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has issued updated recommendations for hospital visitation and continues to require face coverings for individuals visiting hospitals and other health care facilities.  

In its revised hospital visitation recommendations released June 16 in All Facilities Letter (AFL) 20-38.7, CDPH now recommends that: 

  • Hospitals statewide allow patients up to two visitors from the same household at a time. Previously, CDPH recommended that hospitals allow patients up to two visitors from the same household at the same time in red, orange, and yellow tier counties (purple tier counties were limited to one visitor per patient at a time).   
  • Visits between fully vaccinated visitors and fully vaccinated patients be conducted without face coverings and physical distancing while alone in the patient’s room (when no other patients, visitors, or health care personnel are present). 
  • If a visitor or patient cannot provide documentation that they are fully vaccinated, the hospital can rely on a visitor or patient stating that they are fully vaccinated for purposes of following this guidance. 

These are recommendations, not requirements, and hospitals can adopt them in their own visitor guidelines or choose not to do so. To provide implementation time for hospitals that want to align their visitor guidelines with these recommendations, CDPH has made the recommendations effective starting June 22.  

By contrast, CDPH continues to require individuals to wear face coverings when visiting hospitals and other health care facilities. This is contained in an updated State Health Order from CDPH that went into effect June 15. This order requires individuals to follow updated Guidance for the Use of Face Coverings from CDPH, which specifies that in health care settings, masks are required for everyone, regardless of vaccination status.