Coronavirus guidance

If you think you may have symptoms of Coronavirus, follow the national guidance and self-isolate for seven days. We have Introduced a number of measures and changes to help delay the spread of the virus and maintain essential health services for those that will continue to need them during these unprecedented times. If you, or a member of your family has tested positive for Coronavirus, please find resources to aid your/their recovery on our Coronavirus - Supporting your recovery page.

Information for visitors

Visiting restrictions in our hospitals

We have temporarily changed our visiting arrangements to help respond to coronavirus and protect our staff, visitors and patients. We know that it’s important for our patients to see family and friends but please consider if your visit is essential to help prevent the spread of infection.

Changes – from midday on Saturday 14 March 2020

Visiting will be limited to only essential visitors on all of our wards and departments. Examples of essential visitors are:

  • Emergency Department – restricted to one person if needed to provide support
  • Those who are unable to make decisions for themselves, in line with the mental capacity act regulations, may be accompanied

Children

Visiting is limited to one parent per day, who may choose to stay all day or for a short period of time, but there should be no swopping or return in same day. One parent is allowed to visit Neonatal Intensive Care, but we are currently awaiting guidance form the neonatal network to understand whether this can be increased to two parents.

Maternity

One birth partner in PPE will be allowed to accompany if the mum-to-be isn’t suspected or positive with Covid-19, though this partner needs to be the same person throughout the birth. Women who are attending for a planned caesarean section can be accompanied by their birth partner to the ward and can be present in Theatre during the operation. The birth partner will be asked to wear a surgical face mask and adhere to infection prevention and control measures during this time.

The birth partner will be supported to stay with mother and baby in the recovery area on labour ward prior to transfer to the postnatal ward. Once on the postnatal ward we would ask that the birth partner returns home. Sadly we can’t allow birth partners or visitors to the maternity ward or attend Pregnancy Assessment Unit/Maternity assessment Unit or antenatal clinics (all settings). If being induced, the birth partner can attend the initial admission and then return home while awaiting labour.

End of Life Care

Visiting is limited to one visitor and in accord with the patient’s wishes, with those visiting wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Our Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) will provide support if family members are unable to visit via phone or virtual communication (for example, Skype, WhatsApp) and will also act as a patient-family intermediary to exchange messages/letters etc.

Mortuary

We have taken the decision to restrict viewings only to instances where police identification is required by the coroner (in which case there must be a police presence). Whilst we appreciate the distress this may cause to families in the short term, the Trust must take measures to reduce the risk of staff contracting the virus, either from a patient or visitor to hospitals during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Please follow all of our infection control measures if you do come to hospital: 

  • You should avoid coming to the hospital if you are feeling unwell, including with cold or flu symptoms 
  • Wash or gel your hands as soon as you enter a ward or unit 
  • Follow the additional measures that will be requested by our staff if you are visiting a patient with an infection.

Further to the visiting restrictions in place, we are also providing chaplaincy and bereavement support for patients and their families of all faiths and none. A series of booklets with words from various different faith traditions have been created for ward staff to use at the End of Life. We have made arrangements for provision of Last Rites with families, but this may take place off the ward where necessary.

Contacting our wards

We understand that it is important to contact your loved ones while they are in hospital. Where possible, we encourage relatives and friends to call the patient directly or have a video call. If you want to contact the ward for updates, we would be grateful if one person from the family can be the nominated contact, who then keeps the rest of the family and friends informed. This helps to keep our phone lines as clear as possible for other families who need updates.

We know that it’s important for our patients to see family and friends but please consider if your visit is essential to help prevent the spread of infection. Visiting will be limited to only essential visitors on all of our wards and departments as per the above guidance.

Getting to our hospitals

Find directions, contact numbers and parking information for each of our five hospital:
 

Wards and visiting times

Find ward information such as contact details, visiting hours, and additional information for each of our hospitals:
 

 

Preventing infections

We are committed to improving patient safety by reducing and preventing infections such as MRSA, Clostridium difficule and novovirus. You can help keep our hospitals clean and reduce the risk of spreading infection.

When not to come into hospital

Please do not visit the hospital (as a visitor or patient) if you are unwell with:

  • cold-like symptoms
  • diarrhoea and vomiting
  • infectious diseases such as chickenpox, shingles, measles etc

Wash your hands

Cleaning your hands is the most effective way of preventing germs being passed from one person to another. Wash you hands with soap and water:

  • after visiting the toilet
  • before and after eating food
  • before and after visiting a patient

Alcohol gel dispensers are by most beds and at the entrances of all wards for staff, patients and visitors to use.

Report an issue

If you see an area that is need of cleaning, please report it to member of staff.

Smoking

Smoking tobacco and cigarettes at any of our hospitals is not allowed.  This applies to all patients, visitors and staff.

Whilst you are here, please do not smoke anywhere inside or outside our hospital buildings. 

If you are a patient at UHDB and you would like support to stop smoking, please speak to your clinical team. We can also talk to you about the options for helping you if you need to stay in hospital.
 

Get free support to quit

Call the free Smokefree National Helpline to speak to a trained adviser:


Telephone0300 123 1044.


All lines are open Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm and Saturday and Sunday 11am to 4pm.

You can also find all the information and free resources you need to help you quit on the Smokefree website.

Mealtimes

We understand that mealtimes are important. The 'protected mealtime' service is a period over lunch time when all non-urgent activity on the ward, including visiting, stops (all essential and urgent care needs will continue to be met).

This is done to prevent unnecessary interruptions to mealtimes and enable the healthcare team to be available to help serve food and give assistance to patients who require it. It also creates a more relaxed and calm atmosphere, giving patients time to socialise and enjoy their meal with fewer distractions on the ward.

If you normally visit at mealtimes in order to help or encourage your relative/close one to eat, we are happy for you to continue to do this. Please arrange this with the nurse in charge.

Keeping you safe

We are dedicated to providing a safe and welcoming environment. We do not tolerate anti-social behaviour, violence or discrimination of any kind and, if necessary, we will take appropriate action. You can help by treating all staff, patients and visitors with respect.

All staff employed by the Trust will carry a photo identification badge. If you are ever unsure who anyone is, please ask to see their badge.

Policies and documents: