Cayuga Health Issues New Parameters Aimed to Increase Patient Safety, Due to Increase of COVID-19 Community Cases  

Cayuga Medical Center Issues New Parameters Aimed to Increase Patient Safety, Due to Increase of COVID-19 Community Cases  

Pre-procedural Mandatory Testing Required for Surgery, Endoscopy, and Radiologic Procedures, Including Those Fully Vaccinated. 

Hospital Visitations Limited to Two Visitors Per Patient Plus a Companion. 

Hospital Visiting Hours Reduced to Four Hours Per Day. 

 August 19, 2021, Ithaca, NY – In response to an increase of COVID-19 cases, increased COVID-19 related hospitalizations, and recent exposures in the region, Cayuga Health has issued new protocols to assist in providing a safe environment for both patients and staff. Beginning 8/23, Cayuga Health will now require mandatory COVID-19 testing for all patients, including those fully vaccinated, prior to any procedures such as all surgery, endoscopy, and invasive radiological procedures.  

Cayuga Health also announced today that beginning 8/19, they are changing its visitation policy, at Cayuga Medical Center, to two visitors and as well as a support person per day.Visiting Hours have also changed at Cayuga Medical Center and will now be from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Monday-Friday, and 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.  Saturday and Sunday.  

Following COVID 19 guidelines: 

  • Everyone entering the hospital or off-site location will be temperature checked (must be below 100 degrees) and screened for symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, fever, etc.) or potential exposure to someone with COVID-19. Failing, or not participating in the screening requirement, will preclude the visitor/support person from entry.  
  • Patients undergoing same day procedures may be accompanied to the facility by a support person and that support person may remain with the patient through the initial intake process; and may rejoin the patient during the discharge process. 
  • All visitors will be required to wear a mask for the entirety of their visit. Visitors who fail to wear a hospital issued mask and other PPE will not be allowed in the facility. 

Testing for pre-scheduled non-emergency procedures needs to be done within five business days of a scheduled procedure or with a rapid test for emergency care.  The testing will apply to all Cayuga Health locations in Cortland, Tompkins, and Schuyler Counties offering the procedures listed above.  

The Cayuga Health Sampling Center remains open at The Shops at Ithaca Mall at, 40 Catherwood Road and is staffed by experienced and knowledgeable Cayuga Health employees. Regular hours for pre-scheduled drive through testing will remain the same: 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.,  Monday – Friday. Patients getting tested in preparation for a surgery or procedure are encouraged to check that box online, and/or inform the individual on site that they are being tested as a precursor. 

Any area residents seeking a test can go to to review the criteria and schedule an appointment. A call center has been set up for patients who may not have access to the internet, need assistance registering, or have questions. The call center number is 607-319-5708. 

Need transportation to the testing site? Contact 2-1-1 (or 877-211-8677) for a list of options. Available 8:30 am – 5:00 pm weekdays. 

For additional information about cases or specific recent exposures, visit: 



Contact: John Turner, Vice President, Public Relations  

Cayuga Health  

(607) 274-4498  

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information - What you need to knowLearn More
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