Face coverings in the hospital

Posted on Fri, 12/06/2020

Face covering information

From Monday 15th June 2020 you will need to wear a face covering when you come to hospital as a visitor or outpatient.

This is in line with recent recommendations from the World Health Organisation. We are introducing these new measures at Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust to keep visitors, patients, and staff safe.

We are asking that you plan in advance and bring a face covering with you whenever possible, but if you do not have one available when you come to hospital, please see a member of staff on arrival and we will provide you with one.

People infected with COVID-19 can have very mild or no respiratory symptoms (asymptomatic) and can transmit the virus to others without being aware of it. We can all play a role in reducing the spread of coronavirus and keeping our hospitals safe.

If you are coming to hospital as a visitor or for planned outpatient care, it is important that you wear a face covering at all times. This is for your safety and the safety of other patients and staff.

Download advice from the government on how to make and wear a mask.

Face coverings can be cloth and/or homemade. Face coverings worn as part of religious beliefs or cultural practice are also acceptable, providing they are not loose and cover the mouth and nose.

If you are currently shielding and have been provided with a surgical face mask for your appointments, please continue to use this. If you have not been provided with a surgical face mask, you should wear a face covering.

For some people, wearing a face covering may be difficult due to physical or mental health conditions. In these instances, other measures will be considered on a case by case basis, for example timed appointments and being seen immediately on arrival. 

If you are a deaf or hearing impaired, our staff have a range of communication options to ensure that they can communicate effectively with you. This might include the use of clear masks where possible, as well as visual aids such as writing things down, speech to text apps and sign language.

All visitors will be expected to comply with existing social distancing and hand hygiene measures in addition to the face coverings while in the hospital setting.

If you have further questions regarding the changes we have made across the Trust, you can speak to a member of staff, or contact our PALS team on freephone 0800 953 0667 or ghnt.pals.service@nhs.net.

Call us on 0191 482 0000

In emergencies dial 999 / Non-emergencies dial 111

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