Updated April 12, 2023

As St. Joseph’s Health Centre Guelph (SJHGC) moves into the recovery phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, changes will be made to restrictions and guidelines that were put in place throughout the pandemic.  Recently, changes were made to the Ministry of Long Term Care (MLTC) COVID-19 guidelines and directives.  MLTC is taking a phased approach to winding down measures for those living and working in Long-Term Care (LTC) homes with the following changes being the first phase of these measures.

Members of the SJHCG leadership team have spent time reviewing the guidance and directives changes and working to ensure these changes can be smoothly and safely implemented within the organization.

Based on the changes brought forward by MLTC, the following changes have been made to visiting at SJHCG:


With widespread availability of vaccines, adherence to new Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) Standard and high levels of immunity in the general community, the MLTC will not longer require Rapid Antigen Testing.

With this in mind, SJHCG has closed the Rapid Antigen Clinic.  SJHCG will no longer require visitors to complete Rapid Antigen Testing prior to entering SJHCG.


Registration of all who enter the SJHCG is no longer required, however, passive screening remains in place.  Signage has been posted at the main entrance to remind all visitors to complete passive screening before proceeding to visit with your loved one.

To continue to keep everyone safe, we encourage all visitors to postpone their visit if experiencing any symptoms of illness or feeling unwell.


Masking requirements remain in place for all individuals inside the organization.  Visitors will continue to be required to wear a mask provided by SJHCG when entering the organization and must not remove their mask while visiting inside.  Please ensure that you use a new mask provided by SJHCG for each visit.

When visiting with loved ones outdoors, masks are not required.

Staff will continue to wear a mask at all times, even when outdoors with a resident.


We would like to remind all visitors to complete hand hygiene when entering SJHCG.  Hand hygiene is critical to stopping the spread of illness and hand sanitizing stations are conveniently located through the Health Centre.

Please ensure you clean your hands before putting on a mask provided by SJHCG.



Wearing a Mask

Hand Hygiene with Alcohol-based Hand Rub

Hand Hygiene with Hand-washing

Putting on (Donning) PPE

Putting on (donning) PPE – If you have to wear a mask at all times

Taking off (doffing) PPE

Taking off (doffing) PPE – If you have to wear a mask at all times


Visiting the Health Centre during COVID-19

Visiting a Resident in Long-Term Care


SJHCG welcomes and encourages visits from the family and friends of our residents. Community visitors are welcome at any time and we have provided private or ‘quiet’ space to make such visits more enjoyable.

We have also taken steps to make sure our visitors feel welcome at St. Joseph’s:

  • Our bedrooms have been designed to allow for
  • Each neighbourhood has a living room that residents may use to relax and visit with others.
  • There are small sitting areas at the end of each neighbourhood corridor where residents can stop and chat.
  • Each neighbourhood has a communal dining room; however, residents can be seated at an individual table to enjoy a meal or snack with family and friends.
  • There are open-air balconies that can be accessed on the second, third, and fourth levels of the main and north buildings.
  • Other areas in which the resident and their visitors may wish to enjoy a visit are: the Tranquility Garden, the front courtyard at the Main and/or North Building entrances, the sitting areas within the Ireland Family Lobby (main lobby), the Silver Maple Coffee and Gift Shop (main lobby), and the Oasis Library.


Resident Sign-out Books 

It is important that residents and their loved ones inform staff and fill out the resident sign-out book whenever a resident is leaving their

neighbourhood, even if it is just for a short walk. This will ensure that staff are aware of the whereabouts of the residents while at or away from the facility. Resident sign-out books are located on each neighbourhood.

It is a requirement of the organization that all individuals attend the unit and use the sign-out book and communicate to the team prior to taking a resident off of the premises.


Ways Family and Friends Can Make Their Visit Meaningful 

Many people ask us how they can continue to support and provide care for a family member or friend who has moved to our Health Centre.

Participating in activities together can be very meaningful and support a continued deeply personal connection with your loved one.

Family members may want to:

  • Assist your loved one or friend at a mealtime, or with care you previously supported them with. Your company and assistance makes your loved one’s experience at Joseph’s more personal and home-like.
  • Attend organized events such as movies, concerts, or other special events listed on the Client Activity calendars. These calendars are updated every month and posted on St. Joseph’s website at sjhcg.ca.
  • Interact and participate in meaningful activities that your love one enjoys e.g. Read a book, newspaper, play an interactive game, listen to music or watch an old familiar show.
  • Visit with a family pet. Please ensure pets are vaccinated and leashed and that you follow SJHCG’s Pet Visiting Policy for the safety and comfort of all residents.
  • Take a walk outside in one of the gardens or around the grounds.
  • Support and attend Family Council. Your voice and experience will help Joseph’s make improvements, which will help all residents.
  • Volunteer and assist, whenever your schedule.

Visiting a Hospital Patient (Complex Continuing Care, Palliative Care and Rehabilitation)

Visiting inside the Health Centre

Please note the following rules:

  • Visitors must undergo COVID-19 passive screening before visiting indoors and completing COVID-19 passive screening is recommended for outdoor visits.
  • Visitors must follow all policies and precautions in place.
  • Visitors must wear the mask provided by St. Joseph’s in all common indoor spaces and in the presence of staff and other patients/visitors.
  • Additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is required when visiting someone who is in isolation or symptomatic and nursing staff will educate the visitors on requirements. Check with a staff member before entering a patient room if there is an isolation sign on the door.
  • Visitors younger than 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. They must follow all policies and precautions in place.

Day Passes:

Hospital patients are able to leave the facility for short absences (less than 12 hours). Prior to making arrangements for a day pass, please discuss this with your healthcare team to be sure it is safe from a medical perspective.

Temporary absences will be allowed as appropriate. Patients may leave the hospital for a temporary absence for one or more nights if it aligns with their treatment plan (i.e. for discharge planning).

Patients should wear the mask provided by St. Joseph’s while in any public areas during their leave; anyone the patient will be spending time with should also wear a mask.

Visiting Outdoors at the Health Centre – weather permitting

There is no limit to how many people may visit at a time with one patient outdoors.

We strongly recommend that visitors visiting outdoors complete passive screening.

Masks provided by SJHCG are recommended at all times when visiting outdoors.

One visitor may go to the patient’s room to assist the patient to go outside for the visit if the patient requires assistance. This visitor must complete passive screening.