Responding to COVID-19

Patients and Visitors

Our Care Commitment to You

As we all slowly return to activities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, UT Southwestern remains committed to your safety and well-being whenever you come to any of our facilities – either as a patient or a visitor. At the outset of this health crisis, we implemented a broad range of safety precautions, and those measures remain in effect. Many have been enhanced, as you will see in this video.

How we're keeping everyone safe at our hospital and clinics

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Masks for everyone

We are requiring that everyone – patients, visitors, and staff – wear a mask or cloth face covering that meets CDC guidelines. If you don’t have a mask, we’ll be happy to provide one. However, if you have a mask, please bring it.

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Increased cleaning

We are disinfecting clinical spaces daily with procedures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to kill the COVID-19 virus. High-touchpoint areas are wiped down at least three times per day.

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COVID-19 screenings

All visitors, patients, and staff will be be screened at designated entry points for symptoms and exposure, and will receive a no-touch thermometer scan.

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Testing prior to surgery

Patients will be tested for COVID-19 within 72 hours of a scheduled surgery or procedure so results will be available for review 24 hours ahead of the appointment time.

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Safety systems at the ER

The Clements University Hospital ER was designed with airflow systems to handle pandemic situations, and patients with COVID-19 are treated in a separate area of the hospital.

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Physical distancing signs

At all UT Southwestern facilities, our staff is adhering to safe physical distancing guidelines, and we request that you do, too. Signage and floor stickers designate safe distances in high-traffic areas.

Appointments

How do I reschedule or cancel an appointment?

  • Call your clinic or the UT Southwestern Appointment Line at 214-645-8300
  • Navigate within MyChart to the Appointment tab, select “Cancel Appointment,” and select all appointments you would like to cancel.

How do I schedule a new appointment?

Please contact your physician if you have urgent care needs or if you’re experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. You can also call 214-645-8300 to schedule an appointment. We are offering both in-person and video visits. The scheduling team will help determine if your appointment type can be handled with a video visit. 

Is there any reason to avoid coming to UT Southwestern?

No. UT Southwestern remains committed to your safety and well-being whenever you come to any of our facilities – either as a patient or a visitor. If you are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms or you suspect you've been exposed to COVID-19, please contact your primary care physician first, or your local health department for direction. They may be able to refer you to our drive-up testing facility.

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Virtual Care Options

A Video Visit is a safe and convenient way to get access to a broad spectrum of primary and specialty services at UT Southwestern. Video Visits allow you to receive the same high-quality care from a health care provider as you would receive in person while saving time and the cost of travel.

Video Visits are scheduled appointments that are conducted through a live video and audio feed, using a smartphone, tablet, or computer. Video Visits are accessed through your MyChart account and our video and audio conferencing platform called BlueJeans.

Patient safety is, and always will be, our number one priority at UT Southwestern. As the nation and community recover from this pandemic, you can count on us to deliver the care you need just as we always have – safely and effectively. That remains our commitment to you.

Restrictions on Hospital Visitors, Entrances

With the health of our patients and health care professionals in mind, we have put new measures in place to limit the number of visitors per patient, restrict the number of entry points to our medical facilities, and implement screening guidelines for all visitors. 

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Temporary Visitor Policy

  • Patients at our hospital will be allowed only one visitor per day. Visitors may not swap in and out. Patients at our ambulatory clinics will be limited to one visitor as well.
  • All visitors, patients, and staff will be screened at designated entry points. In addition to being asked about symptoms (fever, shortness of breath, cough, runny nose, sore throat, or malaise) and contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19, everyone will also have a no-touch thermometer scan.
  • Any visitor registering a reading of 100.0°F/37.78°C or higher will not be allowed in the buildings.
  • Visitors who do not pass the screening will be encouraged to contact their primary care provider. Staff working at the entrances can also provide guidance on next steps.
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  • Individuals cleared through the screening process will receive a wristband, which must be worn throughout their visit to the University Hospital or Outpatient Building. Dallas County is requiring the public to wear a form of nose and mouth covering when entering all campus locations. (See below.)
  • Patients who are being screened or hospital patients who have already tested positive are not allowed visitors.
  • In order to protect the health of children, those under age 12 will not be allowed inside Clements University Hospital or the Outpatient Building. (This is also UT Southwestern’s policy during flu season.)

Limited Entrances

Please see the limited entrances or access points for our patient care areas.

Limited Entrances at Hospitals, Care Facilities

Patients and visitors will have limited access points to our hospital and care facilities. Please view the table for the most up-to-date information.

Screening Procedures 

Our patient intake process involves immediately identifying those who have potential respiratory or other infectious diseases and providing masks and isolation for further screening. If you are admitted, all patient rooms at UTSW Clements University Hospital are private rooms, limiting exposure to other patients.

Intake coordinators are trained to ask an initial round of questions. Infection preventionists and/or infectious disease specialists might ask additional questions to help further guide the potential infectious diagnoses and to order the appropriate tests. 

The screening protocol used at UT Southwestern has been developed using the national expertise available from our faculty who are specialty-trained in infectious diseases and in accordance with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS). 

Parking and Valet

Aston Ambulatory Care Center is valet parking only.  

Clements University Hospital, Simmons Cancer Center, Zale Lipshy Pavilion, and the Outpatient Building have both valet and self-parking options.

Valet attendants are wearing masks and using hand sanitizer between each transaction. 

Temporary Food Service Changes

Cafeterias remain open, but self-service food stations have been discontinued. Grab-and-go packaged options are still available. 

Clements University Hospital and Zale Lipshy Pavilion

Some tables have been removed from the dining area to create safe social distances, and we ask diners to limit large gatherings at meals. 

  • William P. Clements Jr. University Hospital is open seven days a week from 6:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. with no self-checkout.
  • Starbucks is open from 6:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday, and from 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday – Sunday.
  • Zale Lipshy Pavilion cafeteria is open seven days a week from 6:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Monday – Friday from 2 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • Zale Lipshy Pavilion Simply to Go is open 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday – Friday with no self-checkout.
West Campus

The Outpatient Building, West Campus Building 3 (WCB3), and the Radiation Oncology building coffee shops will operate during regular hours.

South Campus Dining Plaza
  • Hunan and Burger House are open in the South Campus Food Court from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday – Friday.
  • A.W. Harris Faculty Club is open 11 a.m.to 2 p.m., Monday – Friday.
  • D Plaza Mini-Market is open 24/7.
  • Brew Coffee Shop is open from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday – Friday.
North Campus
  • North Campus 3rd Floor Food Court is open from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday – Friday. Dickey’s Barbecue Pit within the food court is open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday – Friday.
  • Brew Coffee Shop is open from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday – Friday.
  • NG3 Mini-Market is open 24/7.
  • ND14 Café will remain closed until Jan. 2, 2021.
  • Bass Center food venues are dependent upon vendor capabilities. Currently, Fresh Market (take out only), Hunan, and Parks Burger will operate for lunch Monday through Friday, hours may vary.