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Visiting Hours

You are invited to visit a family member or friend in the hospital any day of the week, anytime between the hours of 11:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.

When Not to Visit
Early morning, any time before 11:00 a.m. can be a very busy time for patients in the units. 

Please understand that you can best assist in the care of your loved one by allowing this time for the doctors and nurses to provide the direct care needed by your friend or loved one by not visiting during that time.  If you are at the hospital during this time, please take time for yourself in the lobby or restaurant - enjoy a coffee browse the great merchandise in the gift shop or find quiet time in our nondenominational chapel.

The Hush Zone
Space, noise and intrusion into other patients’ level of comfort require that there be only two visitors per patient at any time.  Please check with the Nurse if you wish to bring additional visitors to the unit and encourage others with you to speak quietly in order to avoid disturbing others around you.

Children (12 and under) are welcome to visit with permission from the patient and their nurse. Children must be accompanied by a parent or authorized adult delegate and closely supervised at all times.

Department Specific Visiting Hours:

Childbirth and Children's Centre
Neonatal Intensive Care Unit
Mental Health
Surgical Areas
Intensive Care Unit
Emergency Department

Childbirth and Children's Centre

There’s nothing like the birth of a child to bring friends and family together. Authorized visitors are welcome seven days a week between 11:00 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.  

We encourage only two visitors at one time for the comfort of the patient being visited and the comfort of other patients in the area.

Sibling visitors
Becoming a big brother or big sister is a milestone event in any child’s life. We encourage you to bring siblings to visit the newest addition to the family during designated visiting hours. In order to protect the safety of your child and maintain a tranquil environment for new moms and their babies, child visitors must be healthy and approved by the patient and nurse, and be accompanied by a parent or authorized adult delegate at all times.
Children visiting
Supervised health children regardless of age or relationship to the patient on the unit may visit within visiting hours when approved by the patient.
Fathers play an important role in mom and baby’s well-being. To facilitate this family-centred approach to care, fathers may visit, with mom's approval, from 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. daily.
At the time of delivery
For the comfort and support of expectant moms, the father/partner and two other labour support persons are welcome to attend the birth.

If mom requires a caesarean section attendance of support persons in the operating room is at the discretion of the doctor.

Newborn Infant Security
A child is a precious gift. We are committed to protecting your infant and ask that you do your part by following our Newborn Security protocol as posted in your room.

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

We understand the desire of parents to remain close by their infant, especially so when the situation requires they be in the NICU.  Therefore, parents may visit at any time approved by the nursing staff.

With the consent of the mother, visitors are welcome at the NICU throughout the week during the hours of 11:00 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Whenever possible, we try our best to accommodate siblings. Please check with the nurse prior to bringing siblings to the NICU.

The NICU can quickly become crowded and so we ask that you respect our maximum of two visitors per bassinette.


Kids often get going earlier in the morning or tend to miss their care givers to a great degree.

Parents or authorized adult delegates may visit from as early as 8:30 a.m. Arrangements can be made for you to stay overnight with your child - please inquire with the nurse on your child's unit.

Mental Health

Please check with the staff on duty at the time, but generally speaking family and friends are welcome weekdays from 4:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

To accommodate lengthier visits, weekend and holiday visiting hours are 11:00 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Surgical Areas

Surgical Assessment Clinic, Surgical Procedure Unit and Day Surgery areas
You are welcome to bring one adult companion to attend clinic appointments.  In many cases you will be glad for the company and for the transportation back home.

Day of Surgery
For your comfort and support, up to two adults may accompany you on the day of your procedure or surgery. 

We strongly encourage that you have arranged your return transportation ahead of attending these areas.  Many of the waiting areas can often be quite crowded and schedules can get delayed.  We suggest you arrange alternate care for young children who do not need to be at the clinic - for their comfort and yours.

Intensive Care Unit

Often patients in these areas require close nursing supervison and special attention.  Please assist us in providing the best care possible by following the instructions of the nurses on duty during your visit. 

Visitors are welcome every day between 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Emergency Departments

No one likes to wait, especially at the ER.  Emergency Departments are busy places that at times become very crowded. While several people may accompany a loved one to the waiting room at the Hospital, only one adult companion per patient is allowed into the emergency room with a patient.

Long delays are often experienced despite the very best efforts of the phyicians, nurses and staff on duty at the time.  The Triage Nurse is expertly trained to determine priority emergencies and will move someone in ahead of another if it is thought that their issue is of a more severe nature - a higher level of acuity.

What is not evident to individuals in the waiting area are the number of patients brought into the ER by Police or EMS thorugh the Ambulance Bays adjacent to the building. 

Sometimes a doctor may actually come out to the waiting area to ask you about your emergency.  When this happens it is likely that many of the beds in the Emergency Department are occupied by patients waiting to move to a bed in one of the hospital units.  If no bed is available right away, there is an immediate delay to bringing patients into the assessment and treatment area.


Clinic Appointments, Diagnostic tests, Outpatient procedures and treatments result in nearly 200,000 patient visits per year at Markham Stouffville Hospital.  Waiting area space can be at quite a premium on some days. 

We encourage you to have one adult companion escort you for scheduled appointments, tests, outpatient procedures or treatments.

For any of these visits, children (12 and under) are not allowed in the Diagnostic Testing Suites and therefore they should not accompany you to the Hospital.  We are unable to provide supervised care for them while your test or treatment is carried out. Often it is inappropriate for them to accompany you into your assessment.  Delays that may arise at any point during the day could cause considerable discomfort for young visitors as meal times or play periods get missed.