Guidance for inpatients

We understand that visitors are important to people who are in hospital. However we also have to think about everyone’s safety during this pandemic. COVID-19 is highly infectious and we have had to change how we carry out visiting times to limit the possibility of infection. 

In line with other NHS trusts that offer mental health services, we have decided to cease all visiting to inpatient services, other than for three exceptions.

Exceptional visiting will be allowed:

  • To discharge the ‘nearest relative’ duties under the Mental Health Act or for immediate discharge planning; this visit may be held within the unit but not necessarily on the ward
  • In cases of significant distress of a person using our service who is a current inpatient, with a restricted visiting plan; this may include the need for a physical barrier of a door between the visitor and patient
  • For end of life care.

In these rare occasions, this must be one immediate family member or carer. 

In any circumstance (including the exceptional visiting guidance outlined above) it is important that no visitors should come on to our wards or any other health care settings if they are: 

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

Exceptional visiting is at the discretion of the ward manager and the consultant psychiatrist.   

We will be offering patients access to telephones and other technology to remain in contact with their families.

We ask for the public’s help in respecting these rules and remind visitors that we have a zero tolerance to abuse towards our staff.

The following brochure is available to all service users and carers on our wards, and gives information on what changes they can expect to take place on their ward during this time.

Please visit https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19/ for further information about Coronavirus. 

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