For your Safety & Security

Smoking

PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center is a tobacco-free campus. Tobacco (cigarettes, cigars, pipes, snuff, chew, etc.) is not permitted anywhere on the property — indoors or outdoors.

Because smoking is one of the most serious health risks, we want to assist any patient who would like our help to quit tobacco use, whether that’s during a hospital stay or for good. If you would like assistance, please ask your nurse or one of the hospital pharmacists.

Oxygen

Special regulations are in effect when patients are receiving oxygen. Electrically operated equipment and spray cans are not permitted in these areas. Absolutely no smoking is permitted in any room.

Infection Control

We strive to provide the care you need in a manner as free as possible from infectious complications. It is expected and acceptable for you to ask if a caregiver has cleansed his or her hands before providing your care. If you have questions or concerns about infectious conditions, ask to speak to an Infection Control Nurse.

Latex

PeaceHealth St. Joseph is working at creating a latex safe environment for our patients, visitors and staff. Please let us know if you have a latex allergy. We still have a few medical devices that contain latex but have non-latex alternatives available that we will use for you if needed. Balloons that contain latex are not allowed in the hospital. Mylar balloons are an acceptable alternative.

Medication

Your doctor prescribes the medicines you take while you are in the hospital. Medicines are dispensed by the hospital pharmacy and administered by a nurse.

Patients are not permitted to take their own drugs or to keep personal medicines at their bedside, unless there is an order from a physician. If you have questions, ask your nurse. The exception to this rule is if you are admitted as an observation patient. When that happens, Medicare requires that you use your own personal medications, or you will be billed for the medications the hospital uses separately and Medicare will not reimburse you. You can choose to bring in your own medication and have your nurse dispense it with a physician order. If you have questions, ask your nurse or pharmacist upon admission.

Valuables

Please do not bring items of value to the hospital. If you do, they should be kept in the hospital safe. The nursing staff will provide you with an envelope and receipt of deposit. The hospital does not accept responsibility for items of value unless they are kept in the safe.

Confidentiality

As a health care provider, PeaceHealth St. Joseph has a professional, legal and ethical duty to protect patient information. Your trust in us is important and is taken seriously. Our employees, volunteers and hospital systems safeguard the privacy of patient information and records so you can feel secure in sharing sensitive personal information that helps us deliver the best medical care. If you have questions, dial ext. 6307.

Many people who care about you are likely to call the hospital asking about your status. In order to protect confidentiality, it is our policy not to reveal any medical information over the phone. However, we normally do acknowledge your presence as a patient in our hospital if we are asked. If you do not want us to disclose that, please tell your nurse that you want a “do not announce” status. This means our staff will not tell any visitors you are here and you will not receive any mail or flowers.

Wheelchairs

Wheelchairs are available to all nursing units. For your safety, please ask a hospital staff member to help you when getting in and out of a wheelchair.

Fire Drills

For your safety, the hospital conducts fire and disaster drills regularly. Sometimes it is necessary to do these at night. If a drill occurs while you are here, please remain in your room and do not become alarmed. The hospital is a fire-resistant building and the staff is trained in fire protection.

Childbirth Center Security

The Childbirth Center is a locked and secured unit. Visitors must sign in and out at the front reception desk in the Childbirth Center.

Construction

Whatcom County is growing, and the hospital needs more space to accommodate the community’s health care needs. During times of construction, there will be some inconveniences, although we will try to minimize these as much as possible. Parking spaces will be more limited, traffic may be re-routed, there will be noise, etc.

We appreciate your patience during these times as we expand to better serve you.