So I constantly find that families, visitors or whatever pretty much ignore isolation signs 90% of the time. I understand that our policies may be overcautious but we do draw the line since patients in the hospital are elderly and immunocompromised. Every time I confront visitors about wearing gowns, gloves ect, I always get a sneer or just a comment of disapproval. Sometimes they downright refused to wear their gowns and just walk right in. Sometimes they walk in and say they didn't know the patient was on isolation even though theres a large sign in front of the door. The only way to make it more obvious is to put up bright neon lights saying isolation.
If you're talking about contact isolation (ie for MRSA) then it's not actually indicated to have visitors wear gloves and gowns. The purpose of having staff wear gloves and gowns with a MRSA patient is so that you don't directly carry resistant bacteria from one patient to another, when visiting a single patient there's no reason to have visitors gown up.
The only routine isolation that visitors are required to follow (excepting TB, radiation precautions, ebola, other extremely high level isolations) are that they wear a mask if they have respiratory symptoms. Otherwise they are not required to wear gowns/gloves for MRSA, VRE, adhere to droplet precautions if their child has RSV, etc. They are required to clean their hands upon entering and leaving a patient room. I understand this doesn't seem to make sense- why should we allow that person to visit their family member with MRSA without isolation and then visit the cafeteria where 1,000 other visitors and employees go? But the fact is that isolating the general public would do very little to stop the spread of bacteria. Because that person visiting the family member who is not on precautions is more than likely colonized with MRSA anyway. There's more MRSA and VRE in the community than in the hospital.