The CMHS Commitment to Your Health and Safety

For over 100 years, Community Memorial Health System has been taking care of this community.  Now more than ever, we want you to know it’s SAFE to rely on the care you’ve always counted on.

The health and safety of our patients, essential companions, physicians, staff, and community is our number one priority.  By closely monitoring industry and government guidance regarding the COVID-19 virus, including Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and California Department of Public Health (CDPH) guidelines and recommendations, we have implemented additional policies and procedures for sanitation, cleaning, and visitation, with an emphasis on prevention of virus transmission.

For More Information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) Visit:

CMHS Cleanliness and Sterilization Protocols

Ultraviolet Disinfecting Technology

Community Memorial Hospital in Ventura uses a paired system of Ultraviolet (UV) robot emitters that work in tandem to emit powerful germ deactivating UV energy. This system is deployed to deliver highly efficient disinfection treatments to some of the most at-risk areas of our hospital, including the Emergency Department, Operating Rooms, and ICU rooms, and patient rooms following a COVID-19 discharge.  This UV system effectively kills bacteria and viruses, including the Coronavirus.

Cleanliness Assurance Testing

Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) Monitoring has been in place at Community Memorial Hospital in Ventura and Ojai Valley Community Hospital since 2016 and is used to measure the effectiveness of cleaning processes quantitatively.  The ATP monitoring system consists of a swab test of cleaned surfaces and a real-time analysis conducted by a handheld device called a luminometer. This system measures organic residue left on surfaces, and results are available within seconds.  ATP systems come with software that allows the user to track results and quickly identify areas where cleanliness can be enhanced.

Enhanced Cleaning of Public Areas

The frequency of cleaning and disinfecting of our public areas and waiting rooms at CMH and OVCH has been increased with an emphasis on “high-touch” surfaces including door handles, elevator buttons, handrails, desk counters, table surfaces, dining surfaces, keypads, chairs, etc.

Public restrooms in our main lobbies and emergency department at CMH are sanitized every two hours, which includes wiping down and sanitizing counters, sinks, stalls and other “high-touch” areas.

As essential companion access to patient care areas is highly restricted at this time, the public restrooms on floors two through six at CMH are sanitized twice a day.

All public restrooms at OVCH are sanitized twice per shift (approximately four times p/24 hours), which includes wiping down and sanitizing counters, sinks, stalls, and other “high-touch” areas.

In our cafes at Community Memorial Hospital (CMH) and Ojai Valley Community Hospital (CMH), as well as our dining area at CMH, the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting of our “high-touch” surfaces has also increased, and we have implemented the use of a specialized sterilization product for non-food contact surfaces. These high-touch surfaces include dining tables, chairs, and transaction keypads which are sterilized after each use.  Social distancing guidelines in our cafes and dining areas are also being enforced through reduced seating, floor decals, and signage.

Hygienically Clean Laundry Certification

In April 2020, Community Memorial Hospital in Ventura became the first ever on-premise laundry (OPL) in the nation to earn the Hygienically Clean Laundry Certification.

Hygienically Clean is the quantified, validated standard and measure for hygienically clean textiles in North America, and achieving this certification reflects an organization’s commitment to best management practices (BMPs) in laundering as verified by on-site inspection and their ability to produce hygienically clean textiles as quantified by ongoing microbial testing based on established hygienically clean healthcare textile methods and standards.

The CMH on-site laundry uses processes, chemicals and BMPs acknowledged by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation, American National Standards Institute and others.  These processes ensure that the highest level of clean laundry standards are consistently met, protecting our patients, physicians, and staff and reducing infection across all our CMHS facilities.

Air Handling

The air handling and processing systems at Community Memorial Hospital in Ventura and Ojai Valley Community Hospital are configured to expel all used air, and draw only fresh air into our hospital facilities.  As a result, no air is being recycled.  All patients, essential companions, physicians and staff in our hospital facilities are breathing fresh, clean air.

Patient Initiatives and Protocols

COVID-19 Patient Isolation

For the safety of our patients, physicians, and staff members, all suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients are screened, assessed, and admitted through separate designated areas not used by other patients or essential companions.

COVID-19 patients who are admitted to Community Memorial Hospital (CMH) for observation and/or treatment are placed into isolation rooms when available or into private rooms in the designated COVID-19 unit.  The CMHS COVID-19 unit is separate from all other units at CMH and is staffed by a dedicated team of nurses who do not care for non-COVID patients.

Patients and staff caring for suspected and/or confirmed COVID-19 patients follow strict infection prevention policies and procedures as outlined by the CDC. Additionally, they are closely monitored for symptoms and screened prior to each shift.

Pre-Operative COVID-19 Testing

For the safety and protection of our patients, physicians, and staff, ALL patients who are scheduled for elective/non-urgent surgery at Community Memorial Hospital or Ojai Valley Community Hospital will be required to undergo COVID-19 testing 72 hours or more in advance of their procedure.  Testing includes a patient questionnaire and a nasal swab performed at CMH.

CMHS also strongly recommends that all surgical patients self-isolate for fourteen days prior to surgery.  If self-isolation is not possible, the use of a mask and adherence to social-distancing guidelines is encouraged.

Physician and Staff Initiatives and Protocols

Mandatory COVID-19 Screening

For the safety of our patients, all physicians and staff at Community Memorial Hospital (CMH) in Ventura, Ojai Valley Community Hospital (OVCH), the Continuing Care Center, our Centers for Family Health, Midtown Medical Group and all other outpatient facilities are required to undergo screening for cold or flu-like symptoms prior to entering any Community Memorial Health System facility to report for work. 

Physicians or staff members who exhibit symptoms or do not pass their mandatory screening are excused from their shift and required to comply with more extensive screening and/or clearance protocols through our Occupational Health Department before returning to work.   

Mandatory Personal Protective Equipment

All physicians and staff are required to wear, at minimum, an aseptic mask when on campus at any Community Memorial Health System facility.

Additional Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) requirements for physicians and staff have been implemented in accordance with CDC guidelines and infection prevention protocols and are dependent upon level of patient contact as well as patient status.  Extensive physician and staff training related to PPE is continuously provided as needed.     

COVID-19 Staff Training

All CMHS staff, regardless of department or location, undergo mandatory COVID-19 training to educate them on symptom recognition, COVID-19 specific policies and procedures, and infection prevention strategies.   

Visitor Initiatives and Protocols

Community Memorial Hospital (CMH) Visitor Policy

For the safety of our patients, physicians, and staff, visitor access to Community Memorial Hospital in Ventura is restricted for the foreseeable future.  CMH strongly encourages the use of electronic visitation methods such as FaceTime, Skype, and phone conferencing.

Approved visitors only will be permitted to undergo screening for entrance to CMH. Please see guidelines below for details on approved visitors.

Ojai Valley Community Hospital (OVCH) Visitor Policy

For the safety of our patients, physicians, and staff, visitor access to Ojai Valley Community Hospital is restricted for the foreseeable future.  OVCH strongly encourages the use of electronic visitation methods such as FaceTime, Skype, and phone conferencing.

Approved visitors only will be permitted to go through screening at the OVCH Emergency Department entrance from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm Monday through Friday, and 7:00 am to 8:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. Please see guidelines below for details on approved visitors.

Continuing Care Center (CCC) Visitor Policy

Visitors to the Continuing Care Center are NOT PERMITTED at this time, and will only be authorized by very rare exception.     


The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated restrictions on visitation within healthcare facilities. The following guidelines are based on current guidance from the California Department of Public Health.

 CMHS recognizes the important role that visitors play in the mental well-being of hospitalized patients. In consideration of health and safety of our patients, visitors, employees and community, visitor guidelines have been revised to ensure support for patient’s mental health and well-being, with focus on minimizing COVID-19 exposure to others.

These guidelines apply to all patients, regardless of their COVID-19 status, and will continue until further notice.

General Guidelines

  • All visitors will be screened before entering the facility. Visitors who are ill or who have had recent COVID-19 contact exposure will not be permitted to enter any CMHS location.
  • All visitors must be 16 years or older, have a normal temperature, and wear a mask at all times.
  • All approved visitors must wear appropriate personal protective equipment.
  • Support persons must remain in the patient’s room and comply with any health facility instructions on personal protective equipment.
  • Extenuating circumstances will be handled on a case-by-case basis in consultation with nursing staff and the attending physician.
  • Only visitors meeting the below criteria and numbers will be allowed in the facilities. All additional individuals must remain outside of the hospital.

Acute Inpatient Locations

  • No visitors will be permitted for adult patients except as noted below.
  • One visitor allowed for hospital discharge teaching.

Emergency Department / Ambulatory Medicine

  • No visitors will be permitted for adult patients except as noted below.

Outpatient Areas, Cardiovascular Lab and Surgery

  • One support person at time of service.

Patients at End of Life / Hospice Care

  • End-of-life patient care situations will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis with a maximum of one visitor at a time.

Patients With Physical, Intellectual and/or Developmental Disabilities and Patients With Cognitive Impairments

  • One support person allowed to be present with the patient when medically necessary.
  • For hospitalized patients, especially those with prolonged hospitalization, the patient or family/patient representative may designated two support people, but only one support person may be present at a time.
  • Patients with significant vision, hearing and communication deficits should be considered in this category.

Maternal Child Health

  • Labor & Delivery – Mother Baby Unit: One (1) support person is allowed to be present with the OB patient during labor, delivery and postpartum care.   A doula, if used by the patient, with documented evidence of profession will be allowed in private patient rooms. Doulas will be required to leave after delivery, before or at the time the patient is transferred to Mother-Baby.
  • NICU: No more than two support persons (baby’s mother and her designated support person who were “banded” after birth)
  • Pediatrics: parents/guardians only – two designated support persons.

Options for Alternative Visiting / Virtual Visitation

  • Alternate visiting is encouraged through virtual means, for example using FaceTime, Facebook Messenger, Skype, Zoom, WebEx or other web-based video chat
  • Phone, texting and/or email correspondence 
  • Staff may assist patients if needed

For assistance in determining extenuating circumstances to override the above restrictions, please contact the nursing director associated with the unit or the vice president of patient care/CNO for guidance.

Public Areas and Outdoor Spaces

The frequency of cleaning and disinfecting of our Public Areas and waiting rooms at CMH and OVCH has been increased with an emphasis on “high-touch” surfaces including door handles, elevator buttons, handrails, desk counters, table surfaces, dining surfaces, keypads, chairs, etc.

Public restrooms in our main lobbies and emergency department at CMH are sanitized every two hours, which includes wiping down and sanitizing counters, sinks, stalls and other “high-touch” areas. 

As essential companion access to patient care areas is highly restricted at this time, the public restrooms on floors two through six at CMH are sanitized twice a day.

All public restrooms at OVCH are sanitized twice per shift (approximately four times p/24 hours), which included wiping down and sanitizing counters, sinks, stalls, and other “high-touch” areas.      

Seating and dining accommodations in our public areas have been reconfigured to meet social-distancing requirements and we require that all individuals making use of these spaces wear masks and adhere to social-distancing guidelines.     

In order to reduce crowding and help maintain social-distancing guidelines, essential companions are encouraged to wait in their personal vehicles or make use of our many Outdoor Spaces whenever possible. Essential companions who undergo screening for entry to CMH or OVCH and then subsequently exit either facility will be required to submit proof of screening (provided upon initial screening) prior to re-entry.  If proof of screening cannot be produced, another screening will be required.

Food Safety

Community Memorial Health System’s Nutrition Services Department meets or exceeds the FDA Food Code, the California Code of Regulations (Title 22), and California Department of Public Health (CDPH) requirements.  In addition to quarterly health department surveys and annual DNV surveys, we conduct voluntary third-party audits on a regular basis to ensure safe food-handling practices.  We also partner with CMHS infection control experts to conduct regular internal audits to guarantee adherence to the highest infection prevention and food safety standards.

In our cafes at Community Memorial Hospital (CMH) and Ojai Valley Community Hospital (CMH), as well as our dining area at CMH, the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting of our “high-touch” surfaces has increased, and we have implemented the use of a specialized sterilization product for non-food contact surfaces. These high-touch surfaces include dining tables, chairs, and transaction keypads which are sterilized after each use.  Social distancing guidelines in our cafes and dining areas are also being enforced through reduced seating, floor decals, and signage.

To minimize contact with serving/plating utensils, some menu items (including salads) are being made available as pre-packaged options.  Condiments and silverware are also pre-packaged and are handed out by café staff upon request.

All food and food products are sourced from approved vendors that undergo regular surveys to ensure safe food handling practices. All fresh produce is being received in a designated area and washed thoroughly using fruit and vegetable wash prior to use.

In addition to completing mandatory COVID-19 training, all CMHS Nutrition Services Staff have undergone an additional infection control training to emphasize and enhance understanding of hand-hygiene and safe food handling procedures.