Date: April 4, 2023
Categories: Press Release

FISHERSVILLE, Virginia- As COVID-19 has evolved, Augusta Health has seen fewer deaths and hospitalizations related to the virus. There has been a steady decline in cases, and community habits are returning to pre-pandemic levels. Effective April 5, 2023, masking will be optional for patients, visitors, and team members within Augusta Health facilities, with certain exceptions. Augusta Health also recognizes that visits from family and friends are important to patients; there are now updated visitation policies. Please visit for updated information.

“This is welcomed news and something many of us thought would never come. It now shows that we can relax our masking requirements and still protect patients and team members within a safe environment,” said Clint Merritt, MD, Augusta Health Vice President, and Chief Population Health Officer. “We recognize that some team members may choose to mask because of personal preference or individual health matters, and we encourage anyone who feels this way to continue wearing their mask.”

Along with vaccinations, masks will continue to be an essential tool to keep the community healthy and safe. Wearing a mask helps protect others who may be immunocompromised or at greater risk for serious illness. Augusta Health’s top priority remains the safety of the community, patients, and team members, and will continue to follow the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regulations and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.

Augusta Health has used science to guide health protection strategies throughout the pandemic. Getting vaccinated, boosted, and wearing a mask has reduced both the risk of infection and the risk of transmitting respiratory viruses, including but not limited to COVID-19. Please know that Augusta Health is continually evaluating local data and the status of COVID-19 cases throughout the community to guide protocols and practices. Current practices are subject to change based on this data, CMS regulations, CDC guidelines, and as advised by Infection Prevention or Virginia Department of Health.

Augusta Health appreciates your cooperation in following important health measures to keep patients, community members, and team members safe.

Augusta Health is an independent, community-owned, not-for-profit hospital whose mission is to promote the health and well-being of its community through access to excellent care. Over the years, Augusta Health has been recognized by many external rating organizations: 100 Top Hospitals in America, HealthGrades’ America’s 50 Best Hospitals, US News and World Report Best Regional Hospital, and Leapfrog Top Hospital. For more information about Augusta Health, its programs, or its services, please visit the website,