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Changes to visiting from 7 January 2022

Last updated: 06/01/2022

In response to the rise in COVID-19 cases in the local area and to maintain the safety of patients and staff, University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust (UHBW) has taken the difficult decision to make the following temporary changes:

  • From Friday 7 January 2022, visiting to adult inpatient wards will be suspended (excluding maternity).
  • From Friday 7 January 2022, one nominated birthing partner only can be with you during labour and the birth.

All other visiting arrangements for maternity services and children’s services remain unchanged at this time.

We understand the changes may be difficult for patients and their loved ones, but we want to do all that we can to keep our patients and staff safe.

Exceptions can be made on compassionate grounds, and for vulnerable patients including patients with dementia or learning disabilities, patients with a key carer, and patients receiving end-of-life care.

These exceptions must be arranged in advance and approved by the nurse in charge on the ward. Please contact the ward to discuss and make arrangements.

Where visiting is permitted please:

  • Carry out a lateral flow test regardless of vaccination status – accessed from the COVID-19 website - https://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests before a visit.
  • Wear a surgical face mask (unless exempt from doing so) which are available at all hospital entrances.
  • Follow hand hygiene and social distancing advice, regularly washing your hands and using alcohol gel.
  • Do not visit in any circumstances if you have any COVID-19 symptoms, have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 10 days or are self-isolating (please check uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ for the current guidance).

Deirdre Fowler, Chief Nurse and Midwife at UHBW, said: “We have not taken the decision to make these changes to visiting lightly. We know this is difficult for our patients and their loved ones.

“However, our priority is the safety of our patients and staff. With rising COVID-19 cases in the local community, we have taken this step to keep our patients and staff safe.

“We are committed to helping our patients keep in contact with their family and friends in other ways, including through the use of phone calls and video calls. We also have a Message to my Loved One service to help patients stay in touch. Please speak to our ward teams who will help you to stay in touch with your loved ones wherever possible.

"We will keep these visiting restrictions under regular review and will publicise any future changes as and when they are made. Thank you for your support and understanding."

Full details about visiting can be found at https://www.uhbw.nhs.uk/p/which-hospital-do-you-need/coronavirus

For the latest information and advice about COVID-19 visit the national NHS website at: nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/