Back to Top Visiting the Hospital - The Ottawa Hospital

Visitor restrictions are currently in effect at The Ottawa Hospital.

The Ottawa Hospital is currently in low visitor restrictions as part of the hospital’s ongoing response to COVID-19.

Can I visit someone at the hospital?

During low restrictions, up to two people can be at a patient’s bedside at a time unless you meet exceptional circumstances below. All visitors and Essential Care Partners:

  • Will be screened at the entrance (see next section for details).
  • Will be asked to clean their hands.
  • Must wear a mask at all times (a mask will be provided at the screening desk).
  • Must practice physical distancing (stay at least six feet apart from others) at all times.
  • Must follow instructions from staff on the unit.

What questions will I be asked during screening?

The Ontario government requires hospitals to actively screen visitors who come to the hospital. The screeners will ask you about:

  • Symptoms.
  • Recent exposure to someone with COVID-19.
  • Recent travel.

These questions are designed to help us ensure that people coming into the hospital are not ill and/or not at risk of COVID-19 exposure from travel or close contact. Please also note that there may be a line up for screening because of increased numbers of visitors.

We will also ask for some basic information about you so that we can do contact tracing in the future if needed.

Is the process different for people who are fully vaccinated?

This process is the same for everyone, regardless of vaccination status.

Do I have to schedule my visit with an inpatient before I come?

During low restrictions, visitors do not need to schedule their visits in advance unless scheduled visits are common practice. However, we ask that a maximum of two people are at a patient’s bedside at a time to ensure physical distancing can be maintained. If physical distancing is not possible because of the number of individuals or size of the room, staff will ask you to wait for others to leave so that physical distancing can be maintained.

What are The Ottawa Hospital’s visiting hours?

During low visitor restrictions, visiting hours are 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week. For patients in Mental Health, visitors are asked to come between 2 and 8 p.m. In some cases, visitors may be permitted to stay beyond visiting hours in consultation with the care team.

Can I accompany a patient to their outpatient appointment?

Due to space limitations, only an Essential Care Partner may accompany a patient to their outpatient appointment. It may not always be possible to wait with the patient due to space limitations in waiting rooms.

What about Essential Care Partners?

Essential Care Partners and social visitors are not the same.  An Essential Care Partner (ECP) is a support person whose presence is considered essential to the safety and well-being of a patient while they are in the hospital.

Learn more about The Ottawa Hospital’s Essential Care Partner Program

What about exceptional circumstances?

Care teams will continue to work with families regarding visits for exceptional circumstances on a compassionate and equitable basis.

Please call the hospital at 613-722-7000 and ask to be transferred to the appropriate unit to discuss the situation with your care team if:

  • Your loved one is receiving end-of-life care,
  • You have an infant in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, or
  • You or your partner are planning to give birth at The Ottawa Hospital.

For more information about having a baby at The Ottawa Hospital during COVID precautions, please visit our COVID-19 obstetrics patient information and visitor restriction page.

We will continue to monitor the situation in the hospital and the community, and will adapt our visitor policy to help ensure safety for everyone. Thank you for your cooperation.

Please check this web page for updates. If you have any questions, please call the unit to speak with the care team.

How to access the hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic

Please note access to the hospital has been limited to the following entrances and are only open during the hours listed below. Please follow signage posted onsite and be prepared to be screened on arrival for symptoms, travel history and contact history. For more information on hospital activities during the pandemic, please visit our COVID-19 page.

Civic Campus

  • Parkdale Clinic Entrances: open Monday to Friday, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Main Entrance: open 24 hours daily
  • J Building Entrance: open Monday to Friday, 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., drop-off only
  • Emergency Entrance: open 24 hours daily

Civic Campus Map

General Campus

  • Rehabilitation Centre Entrance: open Monday to Friday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Critical Care Wing Entrance: open Monday to Friday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Cancer Centre Entrance: open Monday to Friday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Main Entrance: open 24 hours daily
  • Emergency Entrance: open 24 hours daily

General Campus Map

Riverside Campus

  • Riverside Professional Centre Entrance: open Monday to Saturday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Main Entrance: open Monday to Saturday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • OC Transpo Entrance: Monday to Saturday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Riverside Campus Map

Information for your visit

Wash Your Hands
When you arrive at any of our three campuses (Civic, General and Riverside), you will see hand-wash stations set up at each of our entrances. Please stop and wash your hands before entering the hospital.

Balloons (Mylar only)
A latex allergy is an adverse reaction to products made from latex or natural rubber. We make every effort to provide a latex safe environment for patients, visitors, employees and volunteers. Only mylar balloons are allowed within the hospital.

Wherever possible, we have eliminated the use of products with scents or other properties that are known to cause health problems for patients, visitors, employees and volunteers. Please do not wear/use perfume, after-shave or other scented personal products in the hospital or when visiting a patient.

Violence in the Hospital
The Ottawa Hospital will not tolerate violent acts or threats directed at any employee, physician, patient or volunteer. Security Services will be notified and take the appropriate action.

Questions about the care you or your family member is receiving? Contact

Last updated on: August 16th, 2021