Universal Masking FAQs

Although more people are getting vaccinated, we still need to keep our guard up against COVID-19. This is why everyone at Cincinnati Children’s is still required to wear a mask while at the medical center. Most of our patients are not vaccinated and it's only recently that children as young as 12 became eligible for vaccines.

Be sure to put on your mask when you exit your vehicle. Thank you to all for your cooperation and understanding.

If I don't have a mask, where can I get one?

Masks are available at mask dispensers or tables at entrances, at screening stations on our Burnet Campus and from your inpatient care team if they are doing your daily screenings on the unit.

Can I wear a mask that I bring from home?

Appropriate masks are required for entry. Family members and patients who are wearing cloth masks or masks of other material such as N95 respirators brought from home are welcome to exchange their masks for a surgical mask provided at the entrance or continue to wear their masks from home. If you’re wearing a mask made from a loosely woven fabric like lace or hosiery, you MUST wear a provided hospital mask.

When can I take off the mask?

If your child is inpatient, you can take off your mask ONLY when you are in your child’s room alone, with the door closed. When a staff person enters the room, put your mask back on, right away.

You do not need to sleep in your mask. The care team will not wake you up to put it on.

If you are here for Emergency, Urgent Care, Same Day Surgery or an outpatient visit, you should wear your mask at all times, starting with when you exit your vehicle.

What should I do when I need to eat or drink?

  • You can take your mask off when you’re eating.
  • Fold your mask in half and find a clean surface to set your mask on.
  • If you are able, eat in your child’s room. If you have to eat in a common area, you must be able to sit at least 6 feet away from anyone else in the area.

How long should I wear the same mask?

Inpatient families will get a new mask every day during your daily screening. Do not use the same mask for more than one day. If your mask is more than a day old, your child’s care team will get you a new mask.

What if my mask gets dirty or damaged?

If your mask gets wet, damaged or otherwise dirty, throw it away in any trash can. Let a member of the care team know that you needed to throw it away and they will get another one for you. Make sure you wash your hands after handling soiled masks.

What happens if I don’t wear my mask?

You will get one reminder to wear your mask outside your child’s room. If after the reminder, you still don’t wear your mask, you will be required to leave the hospital. There are no exceptions. The safety of our patients, other families and staff is too important at this time.

Kids and Masks: The Basics

Important Things to Remember

View more information.

Wearing masks is important right now but it does not replace other infection control behaviors you’ve been doing. Continue to:

  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from other people