How virus rates have changed in Virginia. Courtesy of Virginia Department of Health.

Due to the surge in covid cases, Carilion Clinic has announced a system-wide restriction on visitors starting Tuesday at 7 a.m.

Carilion says no visitors will be permitted except in certain cases, listed below.

The move comes as a health leader in Southwest Virginia warns of an impending “medical disaster” as the omicron variant moves into less vaccinated areas and Roanoke is preparing to announce Monday that all 1,700 city employees must either be vaccinated or present regular negative tests.

Here are the exceptions Carilion has identified:


  • Patients with physical limitations or cognitive impairments, as indicated by the need for a 1:1 sitter, may have one designated visitor.
  • Two designated visitors will be permitted for pediatric patients (visitors must be family members and 18 or older).
  • Two parents/guardians may visit patients in the NICU and both be present at the bedside.
  • One visitor for labor, delivery and duration of birth parent’s hospital stay. The visitor must remain the same throughout the stay. During surgical delivery, one visitor is allowed in the operating room.
  • One designated visitor for adult trauma patients.    
  • Same Day Surgery: One visitor while the patient is being prepped for surgery. Once the patient is taken into the prep area, the visitor may be required to leave until the patient is in a room and the clinical care team contacts them. 
  • High-risk immunocompromised patients may have restricted visitation on a case-by-case basis as determined by clinical team.
  • Visitation for end-of-life patients will be allowed and coordinated by staff and administration.

Hospital-Based Outpatient Services:

  • No visitors, unless staff determine special assistance is required, or physician has asked the patient to bring a responsible adult.
  • One designated visitor will be permitted for outpatient pediatric patients (visitor must be a parent or legal guardian).   

Cariilion says care teams continue to encourage visitors to remain connected to their loved ones through virtual means, including Skype, FaceTime, and/or phone. It adds that “while visitation is limited, there is no disruption to regular services for patients. ” 

Carilion also says: “Visitation is assessed on a weekly basis based on community positivity rate, spread of COVID-19, and mask compliance. Visitors play an important role in patient experience, and Carilion asks that the community do its part to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Wear a mask, wash your hands, practice social distancing. Most importantly, get vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19. “

Full disclosure: Carilion is one of our donors but donations have no influence on news decisions. Read our list of funders and policies here.