One named visitor per patient will be permitted to come to the hospital for an hour, however this is not interchangeable each day and must remain the same person for the duration of the patient’s hospital stay. Those wishing to visit will have to book their timeslot ahead of time by calling the relevant service.
An exception to this updated guidance applies to those patients on a ‘protected pathway’ such as planned surgery or procedures where visiting will still be prohibited.
At the outset of the pandemic in March 2020, the Trust took the difficult decision to restrict visitors. This followed national guidance implemented across the NHS, and only permitted people to come to hospital under very specific circumstances.
As the Trust has seen a steady and sustained decline in cases of the illness throughout the past number of the weeks, health professionals within the organisation are pleased to be able to ease certain restrictions, across a range of adult services.
Doctors and nurses at the hospitals are urging that visitors should only come if they are well, and are not showing any signs or symptoms of COVID-19. This includes a high temperature, a persistent cough and a loss of smell or taste. Individuals must also be appropriately masked, as well as taking the opportunity wash their hands upon entry to the hospital.
In very exceptional circumstances, wards will use discretion to allow for safe, compassionate visiting for individuals who do not meet the standards outlined above.
David Purdue, Chief Nurse and Deputy Chief Executive, said: “We are so pleased to be able to welcome back visitors following a review of our visiting restrictions. Being in hospital is difficult at the best of times, but given the uncertainty of the past number of months, we understand how challenging it has been for friends and family not to see their loved ones.
“We are still operating some restrictions, so we ask that individuals read the guidance carefully and we will continue to review our position on a regular basis. I want to also stress the importance that anyone coming to our sites must wear an appropriate face covering, wash their hands regularly and please do not attend, under any circumstances, if you have a cough, cold, diarrhoea, vomiting or a temperature.”
The Trust currently allows birth partners to accompany mothers and parents and legal guardians to visit children. Other exceptions include visiting those with dementia and other complex needs, as well as individual’s nearing the end of life.
All current visiting restrictions, as well as contact details, can be viewed on the Trust’s website on www.dbth.nhs.uk