BEAUFORT, SC (WSAV) – Beaufort Memorial Hospital announced plans to relax visitor restrictions starting Thursday.

Hospital officials say the decision is due  to a decline in COVID-19 cases in the hospital and the community.

With the new rules, hospital inpatients (with some exceptions) may designate two visitors who, one at a time, may visit between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.

Visitors need to:

  • Be designated at admitting (only the same two visitors will be allowed during the entirety of the patient’s stay).
  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Wear a mask at all times (regardless of vaccination status).
  • Social distance while waiting to be given a visitor badge.
  • Not have any COVID-19 symptoms.

Hospital officials say PUIs (patients under investigation) and positive COVID-19 patients may not receive visitors.

Waiting areas will be open where social distancing measures can be maintained. If at any time distancing cannot be maintained, visitors will be asked to wait in their vehicle. 

“We want to understand the importance of loved ones being with their families and how that is key in the healing process,” explains Dr. Kurt Gambla, Chief Medical Officer. “We feel now the numbers are getting to a safer level and we can allow some visitors to get back in.”

The hospital cafeteria and gift shop are only available to visitors who meet the above restrictions and have been given a visitor badge.

One visitor will be allowed to accompany Emergency Room patients. All others will be asked to wait in their vehicle to minimize crowding in the waiting room and patient care areas. Exceptions will be made for parents of minors.

Learn more about Beaufort Memorial’s latest rules below:

Intensive Care Unit (ICU)

  • Visitors will only be allowed in extenuating circumstances.

Collins Birthing Center

  • Collins Birthing Center patients may have a total of two visitors with them for the duration of their stay in our labor/delivery and post-partum suites, this includes their birthing coach/significant other. Due to space constraints, only one visitor may be present in antepartum.

Surgical Pavilion/Outpatient Surgery Center

  • Surgical patients may have one visitor who meets all of the criteria above. Visitors are encouraged to provide a contact phone number and wait in their vehicle/home. They may wait in the surgical waiting areas provided social distancing measures can be maintained. If distancing cannot be maintained, visitors will be asked to wait in their vehicle/home until their patient is recovered and/or the surgeon has an update.

Outpatient Facilities/Physician Practices

  • One visitor will be allowed in waiting rooms and patient care areas at outpatient facilities, including physician practices, lab and imaging centers.

Express Care & Occupational Health

  • One visitor will be allowed in waiting rooms and patient care areas at Beaufort Memorial Express Care & Occupational Health clinics. Patients with COVID-19 related symptoms are asked to park, call the number located on parking lot signs, and wait for a staff member to check them in curbside. Anyone being tested for COVID-19 or with related symptoms will not be allowed to have a visitor accompany them inside.

2 East/Mental Health Unit

  • Visitors are only allowed into the unit to participate in family meetings. Staff will schedule meetings and notify family members in advance.

Complete visitor information, including visitor hours, entrance closures and safe care precautions, is available at