Visiting rules to be relaxed at Sheffield hospitals

One named visitor per patient will be allowed to visit their loved one for one hour a day at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals from Monday, March 29.
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This includes Northern General Hospital, The Royal Hallamshire, Jessop Wing and Weston Park Hospital.

Professor Chris Morley, Chief Nurse at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We understand how challenging it has been for friends and family not to see their loved ones over recent months and so we are pleased that current circumstances mean we can partially ease the restrictions and allow one visitor to visit for an hour each day.

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"We have always had arrangements in place for exceptional circumstances and these will continue. We do need to stress that COVID-19 has not gone away and is still in our hospitals and the community so ensuring visitors stick to the rules is essential."

Northern General Hospital. Northern General Hospital.
Northern General Hospital.

A statement from the Trust explained: “After carefully considering a number of factors including the decline of community COVID-19 cases, Sheffield Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has decided to ease visiting restrictions to enable limited visiting in its hospitals.

“One named visitor per patient will be permitted to visit for an hour each day. The person visiting must remain the same person for the duration of the patient’s hospital stay and where possible the visitor will need to book a time to visit by calling the ward.

"This will enable social distancing and infection risks to be kept to a minimum.

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“If there are exceptional circumstances such as a person being at end of life, then the ward staff will of course discuss the appropriate alternative arrangements for visiting.”

Maternity visiting arrangements are that a partner or nominated support person can visit the antenatal and postnatal wards for one hour per day, in a nominated time slot.

They will be provided with PPE to wear and will need to follow social distancing rules. Children under the age of 16 are not allowed to visit.

The spokesperson added: “For safety reasons visiting will not be allowed on COVID-19 wards or wards where patients are having planned surgery.

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“This is because we need to keep the potential exposure to COVID-19 as low as possible to prevent spread of the virus or indeed take it onto wards which would then prevent patients from having their operation. Patients will be informed if the ward they are on allows visiting.”

"We are simply asking people to wear an appropriate face covering, wash their hands regularly and please do not attend, under any circumstances if you have diarrhoea and vomiting or any symptoms of COVID-19.”

All current visiting restrictions, as well as contact details, can be viewed on the Trust’s website visiting page.

Anyone visiting the hospitals will be asked to follow the rules below to ensure their own safety and that of patients and staff:

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• Do not visit if you have any symptoms or COVID-19 or indeed are unwell at all.

• You must wear a mask at all times when you are in the hospital.

• You must wash your hands upon entry and exit from the hospital.

• Please do not move around different areas of the hospital or ward unless absolutely necessary

• Children under 16 years of age are not permitted to visit