Further relaxing of visiting is being introduced for patients at hospitals across the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust from tomorrow (Thursday 29 April).
Initially this will be for patients who have already stayed longer than seven days in the following wards:
- Ward 6 and Abbey View at FGH
- Millom community hospital
- Huggett suite and wards 20, 22, 23 at RLI
Visits will be limited to three per week and each patient will initially have one designated visitor. This is to protect patients, visitors and staff during the ongoing pandemic.
Visiting to the organisation's hospital sites throughout the pandemic has been permitted for the following situations:
- Patients at the end of life
- Those who are providing care for a loved one as part of the “Johns Campaign”
- Parents/guardians of children
- Birthing partners
- Exceptional circumstances (e.g. breaking bad news/extreme phobias)
Sue Smith, Executive Chief Nurse and Deputy Chief Executive for the Trust said: "We recognise the beneficial and therapeutic nature of visiting on patients. However, the country still has restrictions in place, including guidance that people should remain two metres apart and that they should not visit each other's houses.
"We are therefore trialling visiting for longer stay patients in a small number of wards. We will evaluate this before making any further relaxation of visiting arrangements. This will take place, in line with the Government roadmap for removing restrictions, on Monday May 17."
To organise visiting, visitors should ring the ward their loved one is staying in, or the main hospital switchboard number (01539 732288) and they will be transferred to the appropriate ward/department. Visiting will take place between 2pm and 3pm or 3pm to 4pm each day.
The ward clerk will directly book visitor requests. Bookings will be taken between the hours of 10am and 12md Monday to Friday. Patients will only be allowed one designated visitor and only one booking at a time can be made other than a Friday when arrangements for weekend and the following Monday can be made.
Visitors will be limited to three visits per week to allow all patients eligible for visits to have the same access to their loved ones.
Visitors will be advised to complete Lateral Flow Tests (ordered through the national government system) and complete twice weekly testing during weeks that they are visiting their loved ones.
Information sheets will be available on the ward and at the main entrances for visitors to support them in visiting safely.
If anyone has any queries they can contact the Trust Patient Advice and Liaison Team on 01539 715577.