Coronavirus guidance

Restrictions remain in place and inside all of our hospitals you still need to wear a mask, wash your hands and follow social distancing. Please see information for visitors > before you plan on visiting.

Information for visitors

Visiting restrictions in our hospitals (updated Monday 19 July 2021)

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 and if face to face visiting is not able to take place, we will work with patients to faciliate video calls where possible.

With immediate effect all wards across UHDB, with the exception of Maternity, Paediatrics and Emergency Department, will restrict visiting unless the patient is receiving end of life care. All vulnerable patients, specifically those with learning disabilities, dementia, mental health or complex needs, as well as those who are unable to make decisions for themselves, may be accompanied by their carer.

All areas

All vulnerable patients, specifically those with learning disabilities, dementia, mental health or complex needs, as well as those who are unable to make decisions for themselves, may be accompanied by their carer.

Emergency Department

Where possible, we will continue to endeavour to support one person/carer to accompany the patient during their time in the emergency department, however at peak times this may not be possible due to social distancing and is at the discretion of the nurse in charge. 


Children’s inpatient wards – Children should be accompanied by one carer or family member who can stay overnight and visit anytime.

Neonatal Unit – mothers can visit anytime, and partners can visit once a day for any duration. Parents may choose to stay all day or for a short period of time, but there should be no swapping or return in same day.


Maternity services have reviewed the advice published by NHSE on 15 April 2021. Where it is safe to do so, we are able to accommodate a support partner to attend across the maternity pathway. This continues to be reviewed:

View changes to our maternity services visiting guidance >
(Last updated 19 April 2021)

  • A support partner can now attend all scans. It is important to arrive on time for your appointment. We ask mums-to-be to make sure that they allow plenty of time to park, to find the department, and for Covid-19 checks to be completed. If you are late for your scan appointment this may need to be rescheduled.
  • Women in active labour can have one support partner with them for the duration of their labour.
  • Women having planned caesarean sections can have one support partner with them and then stay after transfer to the ward for up to four hours.
  • One support partner per patient can attend the antenatal and postnatal wards once a day for up to four hours. Ward staff will advise when partners are able to visit.
  • Women having their labour induced can have one support partner with them during the initial assessment, once the induction is under way they will be asked to return when labour is established. This is currently under review and changes will be announced ASAP.

End of Life Care

Visiting is limited and in accordance with the patient’s wishes. All visitors must wear PPE. Our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) will provide support via phone or virtual communication (for example, Skype, WhatsApp) if family members are unable to visit, and will also act as a patient-family intermediary to exchange messages and letters.


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.


Visiting Outpatients and Diagnostics

If you come in for an Outpatients appointment or diagnostic, to support us to maintain social distancing and the safety of our patients and staff please come alone unless it is essential that you have someone with you or have an accompanying carer.

We acknowledge that patients attending these departments may sometimes be receiving sensitive news and test results and we will ensure that we support a compassionate approach to enable patients to be accompanied during these circumstances.

We may also ask that relatives or carers wait outside the clinic/department.

Face coverings/masks must always be worn unless removed as part of your consultation.

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

  • Visiting (except for Children’s and Maternity services) should be limited to one hour long and to one visitor unless in extreme circumstances such as End of Life Care. This should be agreed by the ward and department.
  • Visitors must not come to the hospital if they are feeling unwell, including with cold or flu symptoms, or have been advised to self-isolate due to contact with a person who is positive.
  • Visitors must not attend the hospital under any circumstances if they are Covid positive and/or in self isolation (unless to seek medical help themselves).
  • Visitors must always wear a surgical face mask as a minimum level of PPE on entrance to the hospitals. If you forget to bring one or don’t have access to one, we will offer you a surgical face mask to wear.
  • Wash or sanitise your hands as soon as you enter a ward or unit. Please ask the ward team about the additional protective equipment you will need on the ward.
  • Please always remember to follow national guidance on social distancing, stay near the bedside, keep your mask (or other protective equipment) in place at all times and do not walk around the ward or department.
  • Follow the additional measures that will be requested by our staff if you are visiting a patient with an infection.

If you meet the exceptional circumstances for visiting, the ward will be organising a booking system so please phone the ward to agree a designated time.

NHS trusts are also advised to keep a list of hospital visitors’ names and contact details, to aid the NHS Test and Trace teams if contact tracing is indicated.

 We are sorry but the following people should not visit adult wards during this phase;

  • Children (unless to visit a parent on End of Life care)
  • Ladies who are pregnant

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. Our sites have free WiFi which supports web browsing and instant messaging, allowing you stay in touch.

We also have in place a ‘virtual visiting service’, whereby video calls can be made and written messages delivered to patients from their loved ones which can be arranged through our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) team.

Find out how our 'virtual visiting service' helps keeps patients in touch with their loved ones >

Get information on our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) >

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 make use of the other options to stay connected with your loved one during their stay in hospital.

Face coverings when attending our hospitals

Face coverings when attending our hospitals

University Hospitals of Derby and Burton has put in place comprehensive measures for staff, patients and visitors for the wearing of face masks and face coverings whilst at our hospitals. All patients and visitors should wear a face covering on entrance to the hospitals and throughout the duration of their visit.

The face coverings can be a scarf, homemade face mask or one that has been purchased. The measures are an important part, alongside social distancing, of reducing the spread of Covid-19 in our hospitals and to keep our patients and communities safe.

We have a limited supply of surgical facemasks that will be offered to patients and visitors who arrive without a face covering. Exceptions are allowed on an individual basis for vulnerable people, people with disabilities, children and those with certain medical conditions (e.g. asthma).

Under certain circumstances, for example visiting an inpatient on a ward, you may be asked to change your face covering for a face mask we will provide.

It is important that your clinical care is not compromised so in situations when wearing face covering makes communication too difficult, coverings can be removed with the appropriate social distancing followed. However, for the safety of our staff we would ask that you wear your covering if you are able to.

People with Covid-19 can have very mild or no respiratory symptoms (asymptomatic) and can transmit the virus to others without being aware of it. Face coverings can be cloth and/or homemade, and advice on how to wear and make a face covering can be found on the government website.

Get advice on how to wear and make a face covering (opens in new window) >

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.

Good hand hygiene and maintenance of social distancing continue to be extremely important actions to reduce spread of Covid-19. The measures in place for social distancing and hand hygiene are not changing. These are maintaining a distance of 2m from others when not wearing PPE for the designated area, keeping left, following lift and stair restrictions and practicing good hand hygiene, notable handwashing for a minimum of 20 seconds.

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 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 NHS Smokefree website.

Get information to help you stop smoking (opens in new window) >


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: