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Infection Prevention and Control

We see thousands of patients every week across our hospitals. High volumes of people indoors increase the spread and risk of infection which we take very seriously.

We want you to feel confident that you’re getting the right care in a clean and safe environment. You can help to reduce the spread of infections in our hospitals by following some simple guidelines.

We have put further safety measures in place as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Help us to prevent the spread of infection

Do NOT come to hospital if you have:

  • COVID-19 symptoms
  • tested positive for COVID-19
  • flu-like symptoms, vomiting and or diarrhoea.

If you have an appointment at one of our hospitals, please call us so we can rearrange.

Please call NHS 111 for medical advice.

How to stay safe from COVID-19 in hospital

People with COVID-19 can have very mild or no symptoms at all. This means they can spread the virus to other people without knowing.

We care for vulnerable people and our staff see lots of patients each day. It’s really important we all take responsibility for reducing the spread of COVID-19.

Guidance for patients

To keep staff and other patients safe, we would ask you to continue to wear a face mask if:

  • you are coming to A&E, Cardiac and Stroke Receiving Unit (CSRU), Paediatric Decision Unit (PDU), Surgical Assessment Unit (SAU), Eye Casualty, Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC), Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC) and Labour Ward.
  • you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have tested positive for COVID-19.
  • are entering an area where more vulnerable patients are being treated, e.g. Oncology and Haematology.
  • you have symptoms of a respiratory illness e.g. high temperature, new continuous cough, loss or alteration to taste or smell, sore throat, blocked or runny nose, sneezing, shortness of breath, feeling tired or exhausted, aching body, headache or loss of appetite.

All other patients are not required to wear a face mask unless they would prefer to do so.

Guidance for visitors

To keep staff and other patients safe, we would ask you to continue to wear a face mask if you are visiting:

  • inpatient areas where patients are at high risk of infection due to immunosuppression, e.g. Oncology and Haematology.
  • you are accompanying patients to A&E, Cardiac and Stroke Receiving Unit (CSRU), Paediatric Decision Unit (PDU), Surgical Assessment Unit (SAU), Eye Casualty, Urgent Treatment Centre (UTC), Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC) and Labour Ward.

To keep you safe we would ask you to wear a mask if you are advised to do so because the area you are visiting has a high number of patients with respiratory illnesses such as flu or COVID-19.

Wash your hands

COVID-19 and other viruses and bacteria can stay on surfaces for some time. To protect yourself and your loved ones, please wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitiser as often as possible.

Keep your distance

Leave at least 2 metres between you and other people. It’s one of the main things you can do to reduce the risk of catching or spreading COVID-19.

Stay in place

We know it can be hard to stay in the same place for a long time, but moving around can quickly spread the virus, especially if you do not know you have it. It also increases the chance of you catching it.

  • Please do NOT visit other parts of the hospital unless you’re asked to by a member of staff.
  • If you’re asked to stay in a waiting or treatment area, please stay there.

If you have an appointment at one of our hospital sites it’s important that you attend. If you can not attend for any reason, please call us on the telephone number on your appointment letter as soon as possible.

Can I bring someone with me?

If you’re a attending an appointment you can bring one family member, carer, friend or supporter with you.

There  are no restrictions for parents/ guardians attending out patient appointments with their child.

If you need additional support because of a disability or essential need, please call the number on your appointment letter. 

Video or telephone appointments

If you have a telephone or video appointment, please be available at the time of your appointment. We’ll contact you within 1 hour of your appointment time.

If you need further assistance

If you need assistance getting from the car park or hospital bus stop, or need an interpreter for your appointment, please tell us by calling the outpatients bookings team. You’ll find the telephone number on your appointment letter.

If your symptoms get worse

If your symptoms get worse before your appointment, please call your GP or the appropriate hospital team for advice as soon as possible.

We may need you to take regular tests to help reduce the spread of infection during your hospital stay.
If you test positive for COVID-19, we may move you to a different room to keep people around you safe and so that we can provide you with the right type of care.

Working together to protect each other

It’s ok to remind doctors, nurses and other patients that we need to make space for each other and to cover our mouths and noses. Reminders can help us all to look out for each other.

Other ways to keep everyone safe

To help keep us all safe, please do NOT:

  • sit on other patients’ beds or seats
  • share food and drink or other items, for example newspapers
  • pick up or move items for other people
  • help other patients to walk or move around.

If you or another patient need something, please let our staff know. Our staff are trained to help in a safe way.

 

More information

If you want to know more about how we’re trying to stop COVID-19 spreading and keep people safe, please ask a member of staff.
Find out more about COVID-19 including the latest government guidelines

For advice or further assistance before your appointment, contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service.

Infection Prevention and Control patient information