Proof of full vaccination or documentation of a negative COVID-19 test prior to entering local hospitals

SAN LUIS OBISPO — On Aug. 5, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued a state mandated public health order regarding visitation within all hospitals in California.

Effective Wednesday, Aug. 11, all visitors to Tenet Health Central Coast care facilities, which include Twin Cities Community Hospital in Templeton and Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, must show proof of full vaccination or provide documentation of a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of entering our facility. Visitors may use either PCR testing or antigen testing as proof.

Currently, the PCR test is the only test in the County still being used to detect COVID-19, according to the San Luis Obispo County Public Health Officer, Dr. Penny Borentsein. 

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On Jul. 21, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) stated that the PCR test is inaccurate and could potentially risk false results. Therefore, they encourage laboratories to consider adopting a multiplexed method to facilitate the detection and differentiation of SARS-CoV-2 and influenza viruses. 

Along with the CDC’s information, it was also confirmed that the current testing for COVID-19 can not detect different strains such as the Delta variant. 

Tenet Health Central Coast hospitals are asking that visitors to have their proof of full vaccination or documentation of a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours, ready to show the staff upon entering the hospital. Examples of acceptable documentation include a valid and complete CDC vaccination card or electronic copy or a valid and complete vaccination record from the state registry.

Visitors of end-of-life patients are exempt from the vaccination and testing requirements. 

Hospital-provided masks are still required for all visitors to Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center and Twin Cities Community Hospital.

Updated: Aug. 15 correction made to Delta Variant