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Samaritan Health System Announces Return to Required Face Mask Use in All Facilities

Published on: August 31, 2023

Watertown, NY – Based on an increase in COVID-19 positivity metrics Samaritan has made the cautious decision to require masking in all locations for staff, patients, and visitors until further notice. This decision comes from seeing an increase in positive cases in emergency department patients, hospital inpatients, employee cases, Jefferson County numbers of positive COVID-19 cases overall, and local wastewater testing. Holiday gatherings and the return to school are also of concern.

Hospital visitation will not change at this time. If any visitor chooses not to wear a mask, they will not be allowed to visit a patient or resident.  The goal is to keep the number of positive cases in our community minimal.  Samaritan is doing its part to protect our patients, residents, and staff, just as other facilities across the state and nation are doing.

Samaritan facilities will have “mask required” signs posted, and masks for use at entrances. Should metrics change and cases drop, we will replace the mask-required signs with mask-optional signs. This impacts the hospital, all clinics, and our long term care facilities.

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