Benson, Minn. โ€“ Due to the current surge of COVID-19 cases, and the need to strengthen protection against the highly contagious Omicron variant, SCBHS will be implementing Visitor Restrictions and Required Medical-Grade Masking.

Visitor Restrictions

Starting Wednesday, January 12, no visitors will be allowed in the hospital unless under the following situations, when one healthy visitor will be allowed during the entire hospital stay:

  • End of life
  • Critically ill
  • Parent/legal guardian of a minor patient
  • Support person/legal guardian of an adult with cognitive, physical or developmental disabilities
  • Labor support
  • High-risk procedures requiring in-person discussions about care and informed consent

In the clinic, the only visitor exceptions are:

  • One healthy visitor for adult patients with cognitive, physical or developmental disabilities.
  • Two healthy adult visitors for minor patients. Additional minors, besides patient, are not allowed.

Medical-Grade Masking

SCBHS is also requiring all patients and visitors (ages 2 and older) to wear a medical-grade face mask at all facilities across the health system.

Several studies have shown that some cloth masks may not provide enough protection against the virus, and specifically the now-surging Omicron variant. Patients and visitors use a wide range of face coverings, making standardization necessary for the health and safety of all.

Patients and visitors with non-medical grade masks, including cloth masks, gaiters, or bandanas, ๐˜„๐—ถ๐—น๐—น ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ณ๐—ณ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐—ฎ ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—น-๐—ด๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐—ธ ๐˜‚๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฎ๐—น. Masking is required within the facility.

โ€œWeโ€™re doing everything we can to protect the health and safety of our patients, visitors and staff,โ€ said Melissa McGinty-Thompson, SCBHS Co-Administor. โ€œWe urge the public to help us during this outbreak by wearing a mask, getting vaccinated and boosted, and avoiding large crowds or gatherings until transmission decreases in our community.โ€

Please help decrease the spread of COVID-19 in our community. COVID-19 vaccinations are available to anyone age 5+ at our clinic. To schedule a COVID-19 vaccine, call 320-843-2030.