South Texas Veterans Health Care System (STVHCS)
Visiting Hours and Policies
STVHCS is committed to Patient-Centered care incorporating a health care environment that is welcoming not only to Veterans, but also their family and friends. Patient visitation is an important component of the care of hospitalized patients and reflects the needs of those it serves. STVHCS supports visiting hours that promote healing for Veterans and families, while also promoting a therapeutic environment.
In the Mental Health Units, visiting hours are 5 - 8:30 p.m. weekdays and 1 - 8:30 p.m. on weekends and holidays. Friends may visit in designated areas. Exceptions are made by the patient’s provider and noted in the patient’s medical record.
In the Intensive Care Units (ICU) and the medical-surgical units, visiting hours allow a family member, friend, or other individual to be present with the patient for emotional support during the course of the day.
The patient’s provider can limit or extend the visitation practice. Any limits or extensions to visitation will be noted in the patient’s medical record.
Every employee shares the responsibility of informing patients and visitors regarding the visitation policy. The patient’s provider can limit or extend the visitation practice as in the best interest of the patient and other patients.
Friends and family may visit in the patient’s room except on psychiatry units where they visit in the dayroom or other designated areas..
Minors, those under 18 years of age, may visit if the patient’s nurse determines that the visit is in the best interest of the patient and the minor has no evidence of communicable disease. A responsible adult must accompany the minor at all times. A responsible adult is defined as a parent or person over the age of 18 who is caring for the safety of the minor. The patient’s provider may make exceptions based upon age, the patient’s best interest, impact upon other patients, and the safety of the minor.
Visitors are requested to enter and exit the hospitals through the main entrances.
Note: the hospital allows for the presence of a support individual of the patient‘s choice, unless the individual’s presence infringes on others’ rights, safety, or is medically or therapeutically contraindicated. The individual may or may not be the patient’s surrogate decision maker or legally authorized representative.
VA General Visitation Policy
The medical center respects the patient's right to make decisions about his or her care, treatment and services, and to involve the patient's family in care, treatment, and services decisions to the extent permitted by the patient or surrogate decision-maker. "Family" is defined as a group of two or more persons united by blood, or adoptive, martial, domestic partnership, or other legal ties. The family may also be a person or persons not legally related to the individual (such as significant other, friend or caregiver) whom the individual considers to be family. A family member may be the surrogate decision-maker, as defined in VHA Handbook 1004.02, if authorized to make care decisions for the individual, should he or she lose decision-making capacity or choose to delegate decision making to another. The medical center allows a family member, friend or other individual to be present with the patient for emotional support during the course of stay. The medical center allows for the presence of a support individual of the patient's choice, unless the individual's presence infringes on other's rights or safety, or is medically or therapeutically contraindicated. The individual may or may not be the patient's surrogate decision-maker or legally authorized representative. The hospital prohibits discrimination based on age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture, language, physical or mental disability, socioeconomic status, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity or expression.