Visiting those with Covid-19

Here is a guide on what to expect when visiting a patient with Covid-19.

Visitors should not come to the hospital if they are:

  • Unwell, especially if they have a high temperature or a new, persistent cough
  • Vulnerable as a result of their medication, a chronic illness or they are over 70 years of age.

Before you visit:

  • Handwashing:When visiting someone in hospital, please clean your hands using soap and water. Sinks are available at all entrances to our hospitals and most wards, to enable you to do this. Where there is not a sink, you should be able to use alcohol hand rub instead.
  • Illnesses:If you have a cough, cold, diarrhoea, vomiting or a temperature, you could have an infection and may risk passing this on to our patients. Please do not visit the hospital if you have these symptoms.
  • Face covering:Following the Government’s announcement on Friday (5 June), we are asking all visitors to the Trust to wear an appropriate face covering
  • Other preparations: Dress in clothes that leave your arm (from your elbow to your fingertips) free from clothes and any items such as jewelry or watches. Bring a spare set of clothes to change into after you have visited and before you leave the hospital. Bring a pillowcase to place your clothes in as this will allow you to put the pillowcase directly into the washing machine without handling its contents when you arrive home. Come directly to the hospital from home and do not visit any other areas of the hospital.

What will happen when I arrive at the hospital?

When you arrive at the hospital you should:

  1. Wait for a member of staff who will give you instructions on how best to reduce your risk whilst visiting.
  2. You must maintain social distancing (stay two metres apart from anyone else) during your visit to the hospital.

A member of staff will then:

  1. Explain what Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) you will be required to wear.
  2. Assist you with the correct wearing of the PPE and show you to an appropriate space where you can change.
  3. Talk to you about what to expect when you go into see your loved one.
  4. Inform you of the need to follow the local and national guidance on hand washing and the use of alcohol gel.
  5. Assist you with the correct removal of PPE.
  6. 6. Escort you to and from the bed area.

What Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) will I have to wear?

You will have to wear:

  • Disposable gloves
  • Plastic apron
  • Surgical mask
  • You may have to wear a visor – the dedicated member of staff will advise you of this at the time of your visit.

Will I be able to touch my relative, partner or friend?

This is likely to be a very emotional time for everyone but especially for the person being allowed to visit.

You may be able to hold each other’s hand. We strongly advise against hugging and kissing patients at this time because of the risk of catching the virus.

What happens when I have finished the visit?

  1. You will be helped away from the bedside and with the removal of your PPE in another area by the dedicated member of staff.
  2. You will need to wash your hands and arm, right up to the elbow, once the PPE has been taken off. You will be helped with this by the dedicated member of staff.
  3. You should then change into the clothes you have brought with you and place your visiting clothes into a pillowcase. This should be placed in a plastic bag and sealed for taking home.
  4. You should then go straight home and not visit any other areas of the hospital.

How many visitors are allowed?

Only one nominated visitor will be allowed to visit. This is because you will have to be supported to wear Personal and Protective Equipment (PPE), such as masks, goggles, gowns and gloves to avoid you catching Covid-19.

How do we decide who should visit?

The patient’s wishes are what is most important and they will be able to choose who their visitor should be. Where the patient is not able to decide, you as their main carer, partner, and friend or as a family must decide who is best placed to visit. This is usually the next of kin but can be someone else if that is the patient’s or your choice.

In choosing who should visit, please remember that it is likely to be an emotional and stressful time for both the patient and the visitor. It will be a very different experience to what anyone has been used to before so please be mindful of this. If you are unsure who would be best to visit, please talk to the staff on the ward before you finally decide who your chosen visitor should be.

Getting to the hospital?

  • Until further notice, all car parking at the Trust is free. Also, short-stay bays nearby our hospitals sites are no longer enforced by the Council and can be parked in without restriction. If you cannot park nearby Doncaster Royal Infirmary, we offer a park and ride car park and shuttle.
  • If you are using the park and ride service, you must wear an appropriate face covering. Please note, due to social distancing measures, this may mean the bus reaches capacity easier and may have to wait for another shuttle. Please leave plenty of time when arriving.

Should I call ahead?

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