Call your doctor before leaving home if you think you’ve been exposed to COVID-19 or have symptoms

Due to the presence of COVID-19 in our community, visitor restrictions are in place for all Duke clinics and hospitals. For your safety and the safety of others, we recommend patients do not bring a visitor to Duke clinics, if at all possible. If a visitor must accompany a patient, only one individual over 12 years of age is allowed. Patients and visitors will be screened for symptoms upon arrival. Individuals with flu-like symptoms are not allowed. View the complete list of Visitor Restrictions.

Effective immediately, Duke Health is prioritizing and rescheduling some non-emergent or non-critical surgeries, procedures, and appointments. Check our COVID-19 (Coronavirus) page for updates.

Visitor Restrictions in Place

Effective March 23, 2020

In response to the increased circulation of the novel coronavirus, Duke Health has placed additional restrictions on hospital and clinic visitors to minimize the spread of both COVID-19 and seasonal flu.

On Monday, March 23, updated visitor restrictions were put in place. These changes align with updated visitor policies at all Triangle-area health systems. Patients will continue to be screened at all Duke Health facility entry points.

Duke Health Hospital Locations (Duke University Hospital, Duke Regional Hospital, and Duke Raleigh Hospital)

  • No visitors will be allowed until further notice with the following limited exceptions:
    • Visitation of a patient nearing the end of life
    • One parent at a time for visitation of a child in an intensive care nursery
    • One parent at a time for pediatric patients
    • One coach or partner for a patient on the labor and delivery or postpartum unit
    • One visitor at a time for patients in inpatient hospice
    • One visitor to accompany patients for hospital discharge 

Duke Health Emergency Departments

  • One visitor will be allowed per Emergency Department patient.
    • These exceptions will allow the visitor to enter the facility after screening, and go to the patient’s bedside.
    • No visitors are allowed to wait in the lobby or waiting rooms.

 Duke Health Outpatient Surgery

  • One visitor is allowed to accompany each patient to a procedure or same-day surgery
  • Visitors will be screened alongside patients prior to entering the clinic.

Duke Health Outpatient Clinics

  • One visitor is allowed to accompany each patient to an appointment, unless an additional aide or assistant is required.
  • Visitors will be screened alongside patients prior to entering the clinic.

All Patients Entering Hospitals and Clinics Will Be Screened

All patients and visitors to Duke University Hospital, Duke Regional Hospital, and Duke Raleigh Hospital, along with all Duke Health clinics, will be asked if they have symptoms of illness and exposure risks upon arrival.

People without symptoms will be given a wristband and allowed to enter.

Those who have non-severe symptoms such as fever or cough will be given information about what to do and asked to return home to help prevent the potential spread of illness.

People who are actively experiencing severe symptoms – including fever and respiratory trouble -- should call their doctor before going to any health care facility for guidance on what to do next. Patients who do not call ahead risk infecting other patients as well as care providers.

If you believe you are having a medical emergency, call 911.

Stay Healthy and Safe

Everyone should take the following precautions:

  • wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds
  • avoid touching your face with unwashed hands
  • cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze
  • avoid contact with sick people
  • avoid large crowds

The symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to other respiratory illnesses like the flu. These include

  • fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath

If you have recently traveled and feel sick, call before visiting your doctor’s office, urgent care clinic, or emergency room. Your doctor will let you know what to do next and if you need to be tested for COVID-19.


If you’re concerned that you’ve been exposed or have a general question about COVID-19 you can call:

  • North Carolina COVID-19 Hotline: 866-462-3821 (open 24 hours, seven days a week). 
  • For non-emergency COVID-19 questions: Call 211 or text “COVIDNC” to 898211
  • Duke Health COVID-19 Hotline: 919-385-0429 (8:00 am to 8:00 pm, seven days a week) 

Duke Is Prepared

As the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases grows across the nation, we understand your concern for the rapidly evolving situation. We want to assure you that Duke Health has comprehensive plans in place to care for our community and support our team members.

Learn More About How We Are Preparing for COVID-19

View our COVID-19 section for more information.