Visiting a Patient

Hospital visiting suspended

All visiting at this time is suspended except for the exemptions listed below.

If you should be self-isolating, i.e. staying at home because you have or may have coronavirus, you must not visit our hospitals, even if you meet the exemption criteria. 

Guidance on when to self-isolate is available on the NHS website here: NHS self-isolation advice

If you are self-isolating, please use other ways of keeping in touch with your loved ones, such as phone and video calls or our "letters for loved ones" initiative. You can see the different ways you might like to keep in touch here, or read about our Essential Care Package Delivery Service for inpatients on this page, just click on 'Essential Care Package Delivery Service'.


Visiting Policy - Exemption criteria

Visits from all friends and relatives of patients are currently suspended on all our hospital sites, except in the following circumstances:

  • One parent to accompany their child under the age of 18 if the child requires treatment
  • For maternity patients – a visit by a birthing partner only (birthing partners are also able to be present during the birth)
    Visit the maternity pages for more information on maternity visiting restrictions
  • Two parents are allowed to visit their baby on the neonatal unit
  • Two visitors can visit their loved one in hospital if the patient is considered to be near to the end of their life
  • One person may visit to support a patient who has dementia, a learning disability or autism, if this visitor not being present would cause the patient to be distressed. This person would be considered as a carer.
  • One person may, where the ward manager or nurse in charge agrees if it is in the patient's best interests and at a time and date arranged in advance, visit a patient with a mental health condition if required to support the patient's well-being or decisions about their care. This person would be considered as a carer

In our A&E departments

  • Anyone accompanying a patient to A&E will be asked to wait outside or to go home and will be advised to wait to hear from staff whether or not the patient will be admitted or discharged
  • One person may accompany the patient in A&E if they meet the exemption criteria listed above
  • In addition, if the patient has a mental health condition, learning disability or autism and a family member is supporting the patient, these individuals should also be permitted and are considered as a carer and not counted as a visitor

Thank you for your continued support with this difficult decision that will help us to better protect staff, visitors and patients from infection.