To help minimize the impact of COVID-19, in-person visitation for facility visitors will be temporarily stopped at all Ascension Wisconsin facilities in
central and northern Wisconsin until further notice, Ascension announced today.

Ascension St. Michael’s Hospital, Stevens Point; Ascension Good Samaritan Hospital, Merrill; and Ascension Our Lady of Victory Hospital, Stanley, will implement virtual visitation for hospitalized patients starting at 5 a.m. Oct. 7.

Similar visitor restrictions are also in place at many Ascension Wisconsin facilities throughout the state and this mirrors the previously announced virtual visitation guidelines already in place at Ascension St. Mary’s Hospital, Rhinelander; Ascension Sacred Hospital, Tomahawk; Ascension Eagle River Hospital, Eagle River; and Howard Young Medical Center, part of Ascension, Woodruff.

This policy applies to facility visitors only. Those who have scheduled hospital or clinic appointments or procedures should attend those as directed by their clinician.

Ascension Wisconsin encourages family members and friends of patients to stay connected with their loved ones through virtual visitation – calling, video chatting or texting.

There will be some exceptions on a case-by-case basis. Predefined exceptions include:

-Pediatric patients: Visitation is limited to both parents/legal guardians (maximum of two).
-Women giving birth: Limited to one birthing partner.
-Patients undergoing surgery: Limited to one visitor in the pre-operative
period until time of surgery.
-End-of-life care: As determined by the hospital care team.

Other exceptions will be determined by facility leaders and clinicians on a case-by-case basis.

The updated restricted visitation policy at Ascension Wisconsin facilities in central and northern Wisconsin also includes the following:

-All visitors, associates, clinicians and vendors entering Ascension Wisconsin
facilities will be screened for flu-like and COVID-19 symptoms including, but
not limited to, fever, cough, runny nose/nasal congestion, sore throat and/or
new loss of taste or smell.

-No visitors who screen positive for the above symptoms will be permitted into the facility.

-Visitors entering for the above exceptions will be required to wear a mask
upon entry and for the duration of the visit.

-Visitors younger than 18 will not be permitted.

“We appreciate the community’s support in adhering to these guidelines, as we continue to care for our neighbors who are most in need during these unprecedented times,” said Teri Theiler, chief administrative officer at Ascension St. Michael’s Hospital.

Ascension Wisconsin reminds the community that it’s vitally important to practice safe, everyday preventative actions to limit the spread of COVID-19. This includes:

-Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.

-Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

-Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.

-Wear a face mask/cloth covering in public places.

-Maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet apart from others.

-Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

-Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects daily.

If someone is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, or has had a potential exposure, please call your primary care provider or call 833-981-0711.

If you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency or difficulty breathing, go directly to the ER or dial 911.

For additional information on COVID-19 and Ascension resources, visit or call the dedicated Ascension Wisconsin COVID-19 informational hotline at 833-981-0711.