Patients, visitors and staff will be required to continue wearing masks, gel their hands and adhere to social distancing while in any of South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw’s hospitals, GP surgeries, community health centres and other health locations despite the lifting of national restrictions on Monday 19 July.
The guidance is in line with national infection prevention control guidance set out by Public Health England yesterday (15 July) stating that mask-wearing should continue in health and care settings beyond the 19 July.
As of Monday 19 July, patients, visitors, healthcare staff will need to:
- Continue to wear a mask. Masks will be freely available at all sites in case anyone does not have one with them.
- Continue to wash/gel hands regularly especially on entry and exit.
- Keep a distance from other people at all times unless it is part of the care being given
- Not attend if they have any Covid-19 symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Track and Trace.
Visiting restrictions will remain unchanged at each hospital site and people are urged to check individual hospital websites and social media for the latest position. In the majority of cases it is one named visitor at a time allowed for up two hours a day unless in exceptional circumstances.
David Purdue, Chief Nurse and Deputy Chief Executive at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals, said: “We are incredibly grateful for the continued support of our patients, visitors and staff, and understand that we are all desperate for the day when we are no longer restricted in our actions. However as healthcare professionals we have a duty to consider what is happening locally as well as nationally, the vulnerability of the people we come into contact with and the impact on the delivery of healthcare if rising numbers of colleagues also contract the virus. Currently we have one of the highest levels of COVID-19 cases in the community since the last peak in January and our hospital admissions are rising each day.
“Masks will be freely available at our hospitals, GP centres and community venues and so please do feel free to approach a member of staff if you forget to bring one along. We will continue to monitor the situation and national guidance in the coming weeks and make changes where it is safe and appropriate to do so. In the meantime please check the website and social media of local hospitals and other healthcare organisations to check the current restrictions in place including visiting arrangements and coming for appointments.
“Finally I would urge anyone who has not had both COVID-19 vaccinations to please take the opportunity to do so at your earliest opportunity.”