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Visiting arrangements and face masks

Visiting arrangements

UPDATED: 18 June 2021

We had previously advised that the introduction of limited visiting arrangements, using the rule of one, would be kept under review. Given increasing COVID-19 cases in our local region, visiting has been suspended.

From 18 June 2021, visiting arrangements will once again be limited to the following exceptional circumstances:

  • A maximum of two visitors for patients who are in their last hours / days and receiving end of life care.
  • One carer that is supporting someone with a mental health issue, cognitive impairment such as dementia, a learning disability or autism, where not being present would cause the patient to be distressed.
  • In exceptional cases, consideration will be given to individual requests following a comprehensive risk assessment.

Read more about visiting and how we can support patients and their loved ones here.

Thank you for your continued support and understanding at this challenging time.

 

Visiting the Emergency Department

Visiting is still temporarily limited within our Emergency Departments and Acute Medical Unit (AMU) at this time in order to maintain social distancing and reduce the risk of infection. If you are attending one of our emergency departments, one carer is permitted to accompany a patient in exceptional circumstances. Please speak to staff on arrival for more information. Any other relatives or friends will be required to wait outside of the hospital.

Outpatient appointments

If you are attending an outpatient appointment, to maintain safe social distancing and reduce the risk of infection, we please ask that you attend your appointment alone. If you need to be accompanied, one carer is permitted in exceptional circumstances, but please discuss this with your care team beforehand. Any other relatives or friends will be required to wait outside of the hospital.

Thank you for your continued support and understanding at this challenging time. We will review these arrangements on a regular basis.

 

Wearing of face coverings – patients and visitors

We can all play a role in reducing the spread of coronavirus and keeping our hospitals safe. If you are coming to hospital as a visitor or for planned outpatient care, it is important that you wear a face covering at all times, unless you are exempt under current government guidelines. This is for your safety and the safety of other patients and staff.

Face coverings can be cloth and/or homemade, and advice on how to wear and make one can be found on the government website. Face coverings worn as part of religious beliefs or cultural practice are also acceptable, providing they are not loose and cover the mouth and nose.

We are asking that you please plan in advance and bring a face covering with you whenever possible, but if you do not have one available when you come to hospital, we will provide you with a face mask from a designated face mask station.

Visitors entering clinical areas should continue to use Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) appropriate to that clinical area and will be advised by staff.

Please remember that face masks and face coverings are only effective if you use them correctly, and in combination with social distancing and other measures, such as:

  • Good hand hygiene
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Catch it, bin it, kill it (respiratory hygiene)
  • Regular cleaning of surfaces

We understand many visitors and outpatients may be anxious about coming to hospital. Please be reassured that we have additional hand gel dispensers placed around each site, and would advise against the wearing of gloves to prevent any potential spread of germs. Thank you for your co-operation.

The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal. If you have a hospital appointment then you should attend as planned.