Published on: Friday 7th January 2022

Inpatients in healthcare settings can be more vulnerable to severe illness because of coronavirus (COVID-19). We encourage visits wherever possible, and do so in a safe and protected way.

We fully recognise the contribution that visiting makes to the wellbeing and the person-centred care of people we are looking after. The health, safety, mental health and wellbeing of people, communities and our staff remain our priority. Additional protections have therefore been put in place to facilitate safe visiting.

Before visiting your loved one you should:

  • Contact the ward/department/service/care home setting to discuss appropriate local arrangements to ensure you are informed about what to expect when you see your loved one and can be given practical advice about social distancing, wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and handwashing;
  • Take a Lateral Flow Test (LFT), regardless of your vaccination status, and provide proof of a negative result at the time of the visit. This test should be taken as close to the visit as possible. Proof of the test result can be provided either through the GOVT portal on your phone when you registered the outcome of the test, through a photo on your phone with a date stamp or the actual negative test itself.  If you do not have access to LFT kits then please let the staff know when you call to arrange the visit and we will support you.

Do not visit if:

  • you are showing any symptoms of COVID-19. This is essential for infection prevention and control. If you display symptoms of COVID-19 or have a positive test result you should stay at home and self-isolate immediately. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should arrange to take a PCR test as soon as possible, even if you've had one or more doses of a COVID-19 vaccine;
  • you are feeling unwell, even if you have tested negative for COVID-19 and are fully vaccinated and have received your booster.
Where a face-to-face visit is not practical then virtual visits will be supported and facilitated.


Face Covering/Masks:

  • You must always wear a face covering, including when entering and moving through the healthcare setting, unless medically exempt for which evidence should be provided.
  • You will be asked to wear a surgical facemask if visiting a high-risk area or a patient with suspected/known COVID-19

Safe Measures:

  • You should limit the number of personal belongings you bring with you.
  • You should remove your outer clothing, e.g. coat or jacket, roll up your sleeves and clean your hands.
  • In some situations, in addition to wearing a face covering you may be required to wear PPE. Staff will guide and support you in doing this. Going to the toilet and having had a small drink before putting on PPE can help avoid the need to remove it and put it back on during.

We welcome your feedback. It’s ok to remind our staff that we need to make space for each other and to cover our mouths and noses if seen not doing so. Reminders can help us all to look out for each other. When you follow these measures, you’re playing your part. Thank you.