Guidance for visiting our hospitals and units during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak
Following yesterday’s announcement by the Prime Minister and to help us protect our patients, colleagues and the public, we have taken the decision to close all our hospitals and units to visitors. This includes Musgrove Park Hospital, all our mental health units, all community hospitals among others. Yeovil Hospital is also closed to visitors.
The only exceptions are for
- patients receiving end of life care
- patients on our children’s wards and the neonatal unit
- patients with specific conditions such as a dementia or a learning disability.
Individual visiting arrangements will be made for patients receiving end of life care and with specific conditions such as dementia or a learning disability.
Visitors to our children’s unit and neonatal unit must be parent or guardian visitors only and are limited to a maximum of one visitor per patient.
Women in labour can be accompanied by one birthing partner.
We fully appreciate that this may be difficult for many people who naturally want to visit their loved ones when they are unwell. We do not take this action lightly but we truly believe that asking people to comply with these restrictions will help keep our patients, visitors and colleagues safe during this period.
We are encouraging those who would usually visit to embrace technology and keep in touch using mobile phones to call and message. Our hospitals are also relaxing the rules around video calls to help keep people connected during this difficult time.
We have also introduced a patient messaging service which is available for relatives and friends to help keep in contact with their loved ones while we have no visiting. If people wish to send a message to a friend or loved one, they should send a text or voicemail to our patient experience team, who will pass on their message via our clinical teams.
While all outpatient appointments have been cancelled, people attending appointments that must go ahead on clinical grounds are asked to attend alone if at all possible. If they need to be accompanied due to mobility issues, one person may accompany them. No children are to enter the outpatients unit unless they are the patient.
All permitted visitors to our hospitals and units are required to wash their hands with soap and water, or use the alcohol gel when they go into a ward/department and when they leave. For the latest public health advice, click here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
No one should visit a hospital or unit, even if they meet the criteria above, if they are
- unwell, especially if you have a high temperature or a new, persistent cough
- vulnerable as a result of medication or a chronic illness
- over 70 years of age
Public health advice
Wash your hands with soap and water, or use the alcohol gel when you go into a ward/department and when you leave. For the latest public health advice, click here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
We recognise that this is a significant restriction and we all thank you for your understanding and support.