The United States are currently enduring a pandemic, a public health crisis like that
which we haven’t seen since the Spanish Flu 100 years ago. During this we also face a collapsing
economy, with the government handing out trillion dollar bail outs like candy. 1.5 trillion going
to the stock markets, 25 billion to the airlines, and the record for unemployment claims beyond
smashed with well over 17 million being filed. The previous record was 600,000 in 2009 during
the economic recesion. Now modern society, by way of quarantine, has become reclusive and
what work remains falls upon the lower class. Workers in fields like food service, retail,
warehouse work, and the postal service, which has also stated to be near bankruptcy, have
become the lifeline for the type of life neccesary to keep America running. Beyond this, the only
service still functioning at relative normalcy is the healthcare field, working to contain and
secure the virus alongside all other standard healthcare concerns.
As the outbreak began here in Utah, we also recieved a freak bout of pneumonia in the
valley, leaving a large portion of the population not only susceptible, but at risk from the virus.
This means our healthcare proffessionals in particular have a steep workload to bear, when
compared to other places in the United States. As this is written Utah has 2,412 confirmed cases
of the virus with 19 deathsand as of last month Utah faced over 200,000 hospitalizations for
influenza. Utah healthcare facilities are now taking extra precautions to prevent further cases,
such as the new visitor policy for the Univeristy of Utah, which states,
from the CDC and Utah Department of Health, University of Utah Health (U of U Health)
is taking aggressive and proactive measures in our hospitals, clinics, and community health
centers to better protect patients, visitors, providers, and staff from the potential spread of
Beginning March 26, 2020 the following Visitor Policy will be in place until further notice
at all U of U Health facilities:
NO ENTRY IS ALLOWED FOR ANY INDIVIDUAL SUSPECTED OF COVID-19 OR
HAS RECEIVED A POSITIVE COVID-19 TEST
For your protection and for the protection of others, NO ENTRY IS ALLOWED FOR
ANY INDIVIDUAL SUSPECTED OF COVID-19 OR HAS RECEIVED A POSITIVE
NO VISITORS WILL BE ALLOWED
NO VISITORS WILL BE ALLOWED in U of U Health inpatient, outpatient and ancillary
facilities (i.e. family, companion, partner, support person, guardian, caregiver) except
under the following circumstances:
End of Life Treatment or Care
Two (2) visitors only at a time.
Visitors will have a one-hour time limit, with the exception of one (1) partner/support
person can remain for the duration of the individual passing.
Child Birth Obstetric patients may have one (1) partner accompany them.
For the duration of birth admission, well newborns may have both parents present.
One (1) Visitor Will Be Allowed Under the Following Circumstances
Patients with disruptive behavior, in which a family member is key to their care.
Patients who have altered mental status or developmental delays (where caregiver provides
All patients who are minors (under age 18) may have one visitor, parent, or guardian per
day (no changing people).
U of U Health will regularly review and update our visitor policy as needed, which may
include the addition of more restrictive guidelines. We appreciate your patience and
A local Paramedic, Sarah Goulett gave the Cougar Claw some insight as to what life is
like as not only a healthcare worker during a pandemic but as someone who provides emergency
services. Sarah works 6 days of the week and over state lines in New Mexico, frequently she
works, like many paramedics before and during the outbreak, non-stop. Last month Sarah was
almost unable to work due to contact with a potentially infected patient, who was later confirmed
to not have had the virus. Still, she needed a doctor’s confirmation before she was allowed back
even after the patient was confirmed as safe. We asked Sarah if she had anything to share in light
of how intensive the quarantine has become, and for those unable to work from home, to them
she says, “We are with you at the worst times of your life, we expose ourselves to keep you safe
and will continue to no matter the circumstance, you are not alone.”