Masks optional for visitors and patients at Intermountain facilities

Posted at 11:18 AM, Mar 03, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-03 19:57:44-05

SALT LAKE CITY — More than three years after the COVID-19 pandemic made its mark on the world, Intermountain Healthcare announced that visitors and patients will soon no longer be required to wear a face mask while in health facilities.

The new guidelines for hospitals, clinics, and medical facilities will go into place starting on March 15.

Officials with Intermountain Healthcare explained the decision was made using, "current health data and in collaboration with community partners, and state and local health authorities."

Current guidelines for visitors at Intermountain facilities indicate that masks are optional while visiting a patient in their room but are still required in general areas where the visitor may encounter another patient.

For employees, masks will be optional in some areas but will still be required in places such as operating rooms and areas of respiratory isolation.

Intermountain Healthcare extended its mask requirements far after the statewide mask mandate was lifted in April 2021. Leaders cited patient and employee safety as the main reason for keeping the mandate.

“I’m grateful to our caregivers and those assisting our patients, said Mandy Richards, RN, Intermountain’s chief nursing officer in a release, "For their commitment they have exhibited during the past three years to always put the safety of our patients and their colleagues first and foremost.”