media release: No visitor policy begins March 19

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

For Immediate Release:
March 18, 2020

Cambridge, Ontario – As a result of the growing COVID-19 pandemic and the volume of admitted patients it currently has, Cambridge Memorial Hospital (CMH) has made the difficult decision to have patient-only access to the hospital. Visitors will no longer be allowed in the hospital, unless there is an exceptional circumstance including:

  • Close relative of a patient nearing end-of-life
  • Parents or guardians of a child admitted to hospital and is under the age of 18 (two people only)
  • A partner or support person of a woman giving birth (one person only)

Please note that all visitors must pass screening before entering the hospital.

The hospital is also postponing non-urgent clinical services and ramping down elective surgeries to help increase its capacity to care for more acutely-ill patients.

“This decision was not made lightly. Reducing the number of visitors helps protect our staff, physicians and our most vulnerable hospitalized patients. Unless you are gravely ill and in need of emergency care or you have an appointment to an essential service, please stay home,” says Patrick Gaskin, CMH president and CEO, adding that “postponing non-urgent services will free up some of our clinicians and allow us to care for more people. We are acting now because once the spread starts in our community, we will need everyone on hand.”

CMH has made the commitment to call everyone with an appointment to either confirm or postpone their time. Please do not call the hospital, especially if your appointment is more than two weeks out.  Patients with affected appointments in the immediate future will be called first. Surgeon offices and non-CMH clinical services using CMH space will be doing the same for their patients.


  • Visitors are no longer allowed in hospital
  • Emergency Department remains open 24/7– please note that non-urgent, non-life threatening cases may experience longer than normal wait times. The same visitor restrictions apply to the Emergency Department.
  • Do not call the hospital regarding your appointment. All patients will be called to let them know the status of their appointment.

About Cambridge Memorial Hospital

Cambridge Memorial Hospital is an acute care hospital offering a full complement of services including surgery, maternity, laboratory, diagnostics and emergency. It employs over 1,100 dedicated and skilled health care professionals, technicians and staff, 280 physicians and 400 volunteers providing exceptional care to the residents of Cambridge, the township of North Dumfries and the Region of Waterloo. For more information, visit

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For media inquiries contact:                                                                                  

Stephan Beckhoff, manager
Public Affairs & Communication
519.621.2333 x2427