Keeping you safe when you visit patients in hospital

Posted on Wed, 12/08/2020

Nursing staff

We are reintroducing limited visiting arrangements to some areas of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital using an appointment-based system.

Our main priority is to protect our patients, our staff and the Gateshead community – thank you for your patience and understanding during this time, we appreciate this must be a difficult time if your loved one is in hospital. 

Where at all possible, we will welcome one visitor from the patient’s family or household to visit for one hour per day.

While we will accommodate requests for visiting wherever possible, there may be times when we can’t because of patient safety reasons – we appreciate your patience with this.

It is up to the matron or ward manager to agree the visiting arrangements for their department and visitors must call the ward to book an appointment. Please contact the ward for the most up-to-date details. 

Once you’ve booked an appointment, you must enter the hospital through the designated entrance closest to the ward you are visiting, where you will meet one of our security team.

Our security team will direct you to hand washing/sanitising stations on arrival and ensure a face covering is worn. If you do not have a face covering, a mask will be provided.

All visitors must ‘sign in’ to the ward by providing contact details as part of the NHS Test and Trace programme. Contact details will only be held for 21 days to comply with legal requirements.

We ask that you follow our precautions throughout your entire visit: 

  • Wear a face covering

  • Practise rigorous hand hygiene (washing and sanitising)

  • Stay 2m apart wherever possible

You are also required to adhere to any requests for you to wear PPE, but the nurse in charge will advise you of this.

There are some areas of the hospital where we cannot admit visitors yet. These areas are:  

  • Surgical wards

  • Emergency Care Centre, including A&E, short stay wards 1 and 2 

  • Chapel of Rest

Visitors should leave the hospital directly when their visit is over and are not permitted to enter the catering facilities on site (Quenellies/Costa).

Anyone showing symptoms of coronavirus should not visit, even if these symptoms are mild or intermittent, due to the risk they pose to others.

We suspended visiting in March to protect our patients and staff and help reduce the spread of coronavirus, except in the following circumstances which remain unchanged:

  • For patients who are receiving end-of-life care

  • For birthing partners in maternity units

  • For parents or legal guardians of children

  • For mental health patients 

We have other ways for you to keep in touch with our patients if you’re unable to visit, such as our Message to a Loved One service or virtual visiting. 

If you have any questions about visiting, please contact the ward or department directly. 

Our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) is also on hand to help you with any questions or comments. You can call them on freephone 0800 953 0667 or email ghnt.pals.service@nhs.net

Call us on 0191 482 0000

In emergencies dial 999 / Non-emergencies dial 111

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