CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- The University of Virginia Health System announced two big updates Friday during a weekly health brief.

Beginning April 18, masks will now be optional in lower-risk settings. These include administrative buildings, ambulatory clinics, orthopedic centers and most of the hospital's west complex.

Additionally, pre-pandemic visitation policies will also be reinstated. UVA Health will not limit or deny visitation privileges unless the patient is at risk.

"We know that, as you are in the hospital healing, having our loved ones at our bedside is really important for that healing process. So, we are excited today that we can take one more step back to normal," said Wendy Horton, UVA Medical Center CEO.

UVA Health says masks should still be worn if the patient wishes for people to wear masks around them.

Those with symptoms of COVID-19 or other respiratory illnesses will be required to mask at all times, regardless of location.

These changes are specific to the medical center and not necessarily satellite sites. For more information, click here.