Visiting a Patient

Visitor Guidelines

BIDMC visitor policies can be found below.

Inpatient Units
  • Effective May 17, 2023, inpatient visiting hours are 11:00 am – 8:00 pm.
    • Visitors should arrive no later than 7:45 pm.
  • It is important that rooms are not over-crowded. This helps us protect the privacy and healing environment for all patients. Please follow any guidance and instructions from our staff about limiting the number of visitors at one time.
    • The number of visitors may be limited in specific patient care units/service lines and in areas where there is not enough space or where crowding could impact care.
  • High-risk, unit specific restrictions may also exist. All visitors who are feeling unwell, please consider delaying your visit. If you must visit, please wear a clean, well-fitting mask at all times.
  • COVID-19 resources can be found here.
If You're Coming in For Surgery
  • Patients having surgery may have one or two escorts accompany them on the day of surgery.
  • Escorts may wait with the patient in designated waiting areas.
  • If you're admitted after surgery, regular hospital visiting guidance applies.

Emergency Department
  • Each patient may have two visitors/escorts at a time.
  • Children over age 12 may visit; children under age 12 may visit at the discretion of the physician.
  • Anyone who is not feeling well should not visit.
Labor and Delivery and Obstetric Inpatient Units

Please note that “support persons” may be with the patient at any time. “Visitors” are subject to hospital visiting policies and hours.

  • Labor and Delivery: One or two healthy support persons
  • Post-Partum and Antepartum: One support person; additional visitors are permitted, according to regular hospital visiting policy.
    • Pregnant patients’ healthy children, or siblings of newborns, may visit but may not stay overnight.
  • Two parents may be with their infant at any time.
  • Other visitors must be accompanied by a parent.
  • No children under 12, unless they are an immediate family member. Children will be screened for risk of infection at each visit.
  • A total of three people may be at the infant’s bedside at one time.

*Exceptions: Designated support persons for patients with intellectual and/or physical disabilities may include, but shall not be limited to: an essential escort, a guardian or other legally authorized decision-maker, family member, caregiver, personal care assistant or another disability service provider knowledgeable about the patient's care. Designated support persons are not considered visitors.

*In rare circumstances, such as when a patient is at the end of life, limited exceptions to visitor restrictions may be approved by the care team.


About Virtual Visits

  • We encourage and can help facilitate virtual visits via cellphone or tablet.
  • Patients should remember to charge their mobile device. Our staff can help if needed.
  • If the patient does not have a cellphone or tablet, most units have devices that can be borrowed for a virtual visit.