Visiting guidance

Visiting is welcomed and encouraged in a very careful and managed way to meet patient need while maintaining a safe environment for all.

Every effort shall be made to facilitate visiting that meets patients’ wishes. This means:

Anyone with symptoms of respiratory infection (COVID, flu) or feeling unwell should not visit

​Visitors will need to wear a surgical face mask within all clinical settings to maintain patient and staff safety. This includes consulting rooms, outpatient departments and when mobile within hospital wards.

It is important that visitors clean their hands on entry to a ward or department and again as they are leaving. If you require assistance, please ask a member of staff.

Visiting is by appointment only and visitors should contact the senior nurse or midwife on the ward to arrange a time to visit.

Visiting may be restricted if there is an outbreak of infection is confirmed or under investigation in order to protect visitors and patients from exposure. In the event of an outbreak compassionate visiting will be facilitated following risk assessment with the visitor and patient.

If you would like to bring flowers for a relative or friend in hospital, please check with staff on the ward first. Where flowers are permitted, we would prefer them to be displayed in Oasis, the foam used in flower arranging.

Visiting specific areas - more details below

All visiting must be pre-booked in advance with the ward – please telephone the ward to book (see hospital ward information for telephone numbers or Tel: 0300 131 4500)

In a six bedded bay, no more than three patients receiving visitors at a time in a bay – up to three patients can have two visitors at the same time for up to two hours per day, visiting times to be planned to avoid overcrowding and allow staff to continue to provide clinical care

The person must be agreed by the patient

Visitors will be triaged and asked to postpone their visit if they feel unwell or have respiratory symptoms. Visitors will be advised if the person they are visiting or those in close proximity have active respiratory virus infections such as COVID or seasonal Influenza

If visiting a patient where the COVID-19 risk is higher, visitors will be required to wear an apron and fluid repellent surgical face mask and to wash their hands. Visitors should consider their own health risks when deciding to visit in such instances

Patients receiving domiciliary care and who have visitors at the time of healthcare staff attending, are asked to avoid overcrowding by asking their visitor to remain in another room while care is being given unless the visitor is needed for emotional support.

A patient may be accompanied by someone important to them. However, in the case of overcrowding or recommendation by the nurse in charge the visitor may be requested to wait outside the area

Patients with respiratory symptoms who are required to attend for emergency treatment should wear a facemask/covering, if tolerated, or offered one on arrival

Once a pregnant person is in established labour, two birth supporters will continue to have access to the Conquest Delivery Suite or Eastbourne Midwifery Unit (EMU)

One birth supporter per pregnant person between 7am and 11pm. Please be aware that there may be a delay in answering the door during our handover periods at 7.15am and 7.15 pm. We respectfully ask that you are as quiet as possible when entering and leaving the ward during the early morning and late at night

If any birth supporter has symptoms of a cold/flu/COVID-19 that they do not attend

We ask that no children are brought to the ward or outpatient appointments

For further information and advice please speak to the midwifery team on your admission

A patient may be accompanied by someone important to them. However, in the case of overcrowding or recommendation by the nurse in charge the visitor may be requested to wait outside the area

Patients with respiratory symptoms who are required to attend for urgent treatment should wear a facemask/covering, if tolerated

Accordion

We recognise the importance of extended visiting for carers of adult patients, when supporting an adult with additional vulnerabilities, where not being present would cause the patient to be distressed, visiting is supported on a patient by patient basis

Some patients have individual visiting plans

Parents/Siblings/Grandparents/Guardians are welcome to visit by appointment as agreed with the nurse in charge

Only one parent/carer resident overnight due to space and ability to access emergency equipment by the bed space

Visitors need to wear a face mask when visiting oncology and extremely vulnerable patients as part of protective measures.

We recognise the importance of extended visiting during end of life care. Visits will be agreed by the nurse in charge and accommodated whenever possible

Spiritual, emotional, and religious support can be assessed and where appropriate provided by the healthcare chaplain or an external faith leader

Visitors who are unable to wear a mask when advised to do so should be advised of the possible risks to determine if visiting can be safely supported with reasonable adjustments.

Do not visit if you have symptoms of COVID-19

Please do not visit if you have symptoms of COVID-19, if you are self-isolating or if you have been identified as a contact of someone with COVID-19.