Empowering Health Care Consumers


Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care

Funding Area

Empowering Health Care Consumers


March 2021


As the coronavirus swept across New York State, hospitals and other parts of the health care system were overwhelmed.

Though crucial to preventing transmission, policies prohibiting or severely restricting the presence of family members or support persons can increase the risk of social isolation and disrupt family connections and patient-provider relationships.

The Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care (IPFCC) has developed a toolkit and ethical framework for hospitals and health care systems to employ in deciding on family presence and participation policies during the COVID-19 crisis and for future pandemics.

The toolkit outlines core concepts and principles of bioethics on patient- and family-centered care decision-making. It also offers resources and guides that hospitals and health care institutions can use to develop and implement policies and guidelines on family presence.