OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Patients at the The Children’s Hospital in Oklahoma City will each be allowed two visitors starting Wednesday, while some adults at University of Oklahoma hospitals in Oklahoma City and Edmond will be allowed one visitor each, OU Medicine announced Tuesday.
The hospitals have been limiting visitor numbers in recent months in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The Oklahoma State Health Department on Tuesday reported 54,172 confirmed COVID-19 cases, up 650 from Monday.
The true number of cases in Oklahoma is likely higher because many people have not been tested and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick.
Two visitors, up from one, will be allowed to visit child patients at the same time, OU Medicine said. Adult patients in the emergency rooms and acute care areas at the OU Medical Centers in Oklahoma City and Edmond meanwhile will be allowed one visitor each.
The visitors must be designated and cannot be changed during the patient's stay, must pass a screening and wear a mask.
The health department has reported 744 deaths in the state due to COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus.
OKLAHOMA COUNTY JAIL
The Oklahoma County Jail Trust on Monday approved $3 million to be paid as bonuses to county jail employees who continue working during the pandemic, The Oklahoman reported.
Despite shouts of “shut it down” from the crowd attending the meeting, the trust voted for the $1,000 per employee bonus, dubbed “hero pay.”
Trust members postponed a vote on spending another $3 million from coronavirus relief funds on projects including upgrades to air conditioning.
The trust also did not consider whether to accept $34 million approved by the Oklahoma County Board of Commissioners last week during a brief meeting and before one of the three commissioners arrived.
The commission was originally to consider providing $36 million of the county's $47 million in relief funds to the jail trust, but the amount was changed without explanation.
The University of Oklahoma announced Thursday that tailgating will be banned on campus for the 2020 football season.
“In past years, a typical game day in Norman draws over 100,000 people to campus,” said OU Vice President for University Operations Eric Conrad. “While we realize these decisions will be disappointing to many, it is imperative that the university does its part to slow the spread of the virus on campus and in our community so we can protect each other.”
The university also requires everyone on campus to wear masks, including at all athletic events.
Oklahoma State University officials previously announced a ban on tailgating on campus.
OU spokesperson Kesha Keith said Tuesday that the most recent coronavirus test results, received Friday, found 62 students confirmed with the virus, among 4,516 students tested, for a 1.37% positivity rate.
The university requires testing only for students who live in on-campus housing, but all students, staff and faculty are offered free testing at the university's health center, Keith said.
The results of those tests will be released “in the coming days,” Keith said.
The university has 25,805 students enrolled for the fall 2020 semester, which began Monday, according to Keith.