Information for visitors

Visitor advice

Please follow all our infection control measures if you need to come to hospital.

You should not come to the hospital if you are feeling unwell, including with cold or flu symptoms.

Wash or gel your hands as soon as you enter the building, a ward or unit.

Visitors should only visit one patient, and not visit or assist other patients in a bay / ward.

Visiting restrictions

For the safety of patients and staff please do not visit if you or your household have had a positive test or have symptoms of Covid-19, norovirus or any other illnesses which can be a risk to others.

Please use the hand sanitiser at the entrance as well as when you enter the ward or department.

The majority of patients in our hospitals are able to receive up to two visitors at the same time.

Visitors can visit loved ones between 2pm and 8pm in the majority of wards. This can be any two people and can change throughout the visiting time, but only two visitors at a patient’s bedside are permitted at any one time.

There are some exceptions to the visiting guidance. For example, if a patient is being nursed in a Covid-19 ward, they will be allowed one visitor for one hour at a time, twice a day. However, this can be a different visitor on each occasion and they must telephone the ward ahead of their visit.

Some areas of the Trust have extended visiting and local arrangements to reflect the nature of the patient group and these include the critical care unit, also known as intensive therapy unit or ITU, children’s, neonatal ward and maternity services. Visitors are asked to telephone the ward their loved one is staying on before to confirm arrangements ahead of time.

Please visit our maternity pages if you are a birthing partner accompanying a woman.

  • Visiting a child: One parent or guardian can be resident 24/7 at the child’s bedside. In addition during daylight hours one additional person can visit which may include a sibling.

Please speak to the ward/departments regarding arrangement for other visitors.

  • In the Emergency Department and urgent care centres, due to limitations of space patients may be accompanied by one person

  • Outpatient appointments: In Outpatient & Radiology Departments, patients may be accompanied.

Compassionate visiting

  • People visiting a patient who requires additional support (e.g. Learning Disabilities, Autism, Dementia and Mental Health) can visit outside of these hours with no limit length of visit, however visitors are requested to contact the ward to arrange visit if outside of published visiting hours

  • Visiting a patient receiving end-of-life care: Close family members can visit. Visiting is flexible and arrangements can be made with the nurse in charge of the ward.

In exceptional circumstances the ward or department may suspend or alter these arrangements for reasons of safety.

Message to a loved one

Would you like to send a message or a birthday wish to a loved one in hospital?

The Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) would love to help you send a special message, happy birthday or anniversary wishes to your loved one to cheer them up and let them know you are thinking of them!

We have set up a dedicated email address ( for families to send a message and one or two photographs. 

We will laminate your message and deliver it to them on their ward. We can also include a small fabric heart, which your loved one can keep with them during their stay. 

Please provide the following information to PALS, so we can make sure the right message gets to the right patient:

  • Your loved one’s name and date of birth

  • Which hospital and ward they are staying on

  • Your message, with a photograph included as an email attachment if you wish

  • If this is for a birthday or an anniversary

  • Whether you would like us to include a small fabric heart as a gift.

Please send your messages to our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) by email at or call PALS and give them the information you want included on 01227 783145.

The service is available Monday to Friday 9am – 4pm and PALS will aim to get your special message to the patient the same day.

Please note that PALS is closed on bank holidays.