Visitor limits related to COVID-19 have now been lifted

UHN has returned to our regular visiting guidelines.

Special precautions and limits will still be in place for patients in isolation or staying on a unit with an outbreak. Please speak with your care team about special visitor restrictions for your unit.


As of July 5, 2023, wearing a mask is optional in most public areas of UHN hospitals.

Masks are still welcome in all spaces where they are not required. The choice to wear a mask will be respected and supported.

Masks are still required:

  • During all direct patient care and contact.
    • This applies to patients, visitors, Essential Care Partners (ECPs) and health care providers.
  • In all waiting rooms.
    • This includes all outpatient clinics, medical imaging and lab waiting areas, the Emergency Department and dialysis waiting rooms.
  • In all areas of high-risk inpatient units, including:
    • Princess Margaret Cancer Centre: Units 14 and 15 A/B/C
    • Toronto General Hospital: Units 6 Eaton South, 6 Munk A, 7 Munk A/B

In addition to being optional in public areas like lobbies, elevators, and lounges, masks are also now optional in common spaces on most inpatient units. This includes hallways, at nursing/team stations or communication stations, and in charting, break and meeting rooms.

Read a Q&A with Dr. Susy Hota on updating our mask policy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is UHN changing its masking policy again?

Community transmission of and hospitalizations from COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses are currently low. The decision was made based on consistently low transmission rates. We closely monitor COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses and will adjust our policy if needed.

Can I wear my own mask for my appointment or when I'm visiting someone?

UHN-approved medical masks will be available at all entrances, outpatient clinics and inpatient units.
If you arrive at UHN wearing an N95 or KN95 mask, you can continue to wear it. If you are wearing a cloth face covering or a disposable mask, please remove it and put on a new medical mask.

What about mask exemptions?

If you are a patient who has a legitimate medical condition that prevents you from wearing a mask, contact your UHN doctor or nurse practitioner's office before your first appointment.
If your exemption is approved, you will receive a Face Mask Exemption Form. Bring your approved exemption form with you to the hospital, as you will be asked to show it by hospital staff. You will be given a face shield to wear instead.
If you have questions or health concerns about wearing a mask, please let your health care team know before arriving for your appointment.

Mask exemptions are not available for visitors or Essential Care Partners.

Who do I contact with questions?

Your health care team, clinic staff, or unit manager is your first point of contact for questions about masking.
If you still have questions, you may contact Patient Relations.

COVID-19 vaccination policy

All UHN staff, contractors, researchers, visitors and Essential Care Partners (ECPs) must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. This means having at least 2 doses of a Health Canada-approved COVID vaccine at least 14 days ago.

Exemptions may be made for visitors/ECPs who are not vaccinated in special situations. Speak with the patient's care team about exceptions. Pre-approval for an unvaccinated ECP will be needed by the unit or clinic manager, except in an emergency situation.

We encourage you to visit family and friends while they are healing. We know that having loved ones nearby makes patients more comfortable and speeds up their recovery.

Visiting hours

Our hospitals offer flexible visiting hours. For more information, speak with someone in the health care team at the patient unit that is caring for your family member or friend.

Please be aware that situations can arise quickly that make it necessary for our patient units to change the visiting guidelines or restrict visiting. If this is the case, we will make you aware as soon as possible.

Patient visiting is also subject to possible exceptions due to concerns around communicable diseases.

Visiting guidelines

Our visiting guidelines help preserve our patients' right to privacy and confidentiality and protect everyone from infections and illnesses.

To help us maintain privacy and a healing environment for our patients and their families, please make sure that:

  • No more than 2 people are visiting at the same time, in order to be considerate of other patients. (Other visitors may wait in patient lounge areas or lobbies.)
  • Your visits do not interfere with tests, appointments with the health care team, scheduled therapy sessions and recommended rest periods. Occasionally, the health care team may recommend that a patient should limit visits by family or friends if they feel it is important for a patient's recovery.
  • Children under 12 are always with an adult.
  • You should screen yourself and your children for any signs of illness before coming to our hospitals.
    • You should wash your hands upon entering our hospitals at the hand-washing stations at the entrances of all our hospitals, at important times during your visits and when leaving our hospitals.
  • You think about the needs of other patients and families during your visits.

How you can help us prevent infection

The most important ways you can help us prevent infections and illnesses from spreading in our hospitals are:

  • Self-screening for signs of illness before coming to our hospitals
  • Washing your hands before, during and after your visits

Self-screening for signs of illness or communicable diseases

We ask everyone to self-screen. Before coming to the hospital, ask yourself if you or your children have any of the following:

  • A new or worsening cough
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Shortness of breath (worse than normal)
  • Severe headaches (worse than normal)
  • Unexplained muscle aches
  • Unexplained extreme fatigue
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Rashes

If you have any of these symptoms or are feeling at all unwell, we ask that you not visit our hospitals until you have been symptom-free for at least 48 hours (2 days).

If you are sick, you may make our patients or our health care providers sick.

Washing your hands

Washing your hands is the simplest way to prevent infections and illnesses from spreading in the hospital and to protect yourself from infections that can sometimes be caught in hospitals.

Remember to wash your hands:

  • When you enter the hospital
  • When you enter a patient unit
  • When you enter a patient's room
  • Before and after contact with your loved ones
  • Before and after eating
  • When you leave the hospital

We recommend washing with soap and water or, even better, with hand-sanitizing gels conveniently placed in many locations throughout our hospitals. Hand sanitizer is provided at the main entrances of our hospitals and throughout our hospitals for your convenience.

Learn more about infection control at UHN.

Smoke-free & scent-free

UHN is a smoke-free and scent-free organization. We ask that all visitors refrain from personal scented products while at our hospitals. Smoking is not permitted within 9 metres of all entrances.

Learn more about our Smoke-Free and Scent-Free policies.

Balloons, plants & flowers

Latex balloons are not allowed in the hospital, as some people may suffer severe allergic reactions. Visitors may bring Mylar balloons to the hospital.

Flowers and plants are not permitted in patient rooms in any intensive care unit, on transplant units, or on malignant hematology units at Princess Margaret for patient safety reasons. Visitors are asked to check with the unit manager before bringing plants or flowers to the hospital.

Disruptive behaviour

Visitors who demonstrate disruptive behaviour will be limited in their ability to visit.

Children who are disruptive or disturb other patients may be asked to leave.

Special requests

We understand that there can be exceptional circumstances that can apply to visiting a loved one. In this situation, please discuss your requests with the manager of the patient unit that is caring for your family member or friend.

Places to stay


Need Accessibility assistance when you're visiting friends and family at our hospitals? Learn more about our Accessibility Services.

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