March 10, 2023
Kansas City, Kan. – Experts from The University of Kansas Health System recently shared an important policy change about face mask requirements inside health system facilities. The health system has reduced masking requirements. The decision coincides with the 3-year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Steven Stites, MD, chief medical officer, and Dana Hawkinson, MD, medical director of infection prevention and control, discussed the change during Open Mics with Dr. Stites, which aired on Facebook and YouTube March 8.
What this means for patients and visitors
- Masks are still recommended. While masks are no longer required in every care setting, the health system still recommends masks. Masks continue to be a key tool for infection prevention and control. Patients with symptoms of any illness are strongly encouraged to wear a mask while inside our facilities to protect patients, staff and others.
- Masks are required in some care settings. To keep patients safe, masks are still mandatory in areas that provide care for patients who are at high-risk for infection. Examples include cancer care settings and those with immunocompromised patients.
- Mask requirements may vary by location. Patients and visitors should be prepared to wear a mask while inside our facilities. Areas that require masking will be clearly identified.
- Our staff will wear masks when it is best for patient safety. This includes settings in which patients are prepared for surgery and recover from surgery. Other examples are cancer treatment and cellular therapy areas.
- We are sensitive to patient preferences and comfort. If you prefer that those on your care team wear masks, simply ask. We will gladly accommodate your request.
- Please respect those around you who choose to wear a mask. The health system continues to encourage masking and respects those who opt to wear a mask to protect themselves and others.
The health system is dedicated to keeping patients and their families safe. We will continue to monitor CDC and OSHA guidelines closely should they change. We appreciate your continued cooperation as we work to keep our keep patients, staff and visitors safe.