09/10/2020 | Press releases

A reminder about visiting ESNEFT hospitals

We are committed to keeping everyone as safe as possible at East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT). That is why there are still visiting restrictions in place at our hospitals.

We understand how important it is for patients to be able to see their friends and relatives during their hospital stay, but to keep everybody safe – our patients, visitors and staff – we are not able to relax visiting any further as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

We would like to remind our communities that, on most of our wards, just one visitor is able to see a patient for 45 minutes a day who has been in hospital for more than 48 hours.

This visit must be booked in advance by ringing the ward where the patient is receiving care. Staggered visiting times are running from 10am to 9pm, seven days a week.

Patients may have up to three different visitors during the duration of their hospital stay, but these visits must be booked by the person closest to the patient, such as their next of kin. Only this nominated person will be able to book visits for the patient.

Visiting slots cannot be shared and it is important visitors arrive on time, but not early, and also leave promptly once the 45 minute slot has come to an end.

Some areas of the hospitals are still closed to visitors, but family liaison teams will support virtual visiting in those areas. Visiting arrangements in exceptional circumstances, such as when a patient is receiving end of life care and visiting maternity units, have not changed.

The Trust’s letters to loved ones service is still running and teams are continuing to use iPads and mobile phones to help people keep in touch too.

We are asking visitors to remember these key points:

  • Book a time for your visit by calling the ward caring for the patient you would like to see. Please ring between 10am and 3pm on weekdays only. All ward telephone numbers can be found here
  • Please do not arrive early for your visit
  • Do not arrive without previously booking your 45 minute slot with the ward
  • Do not make plans to share your visiting slot with another relative or friend
  • Please leave promptly and respect our staff who will politely ask you to leave when your 45 minute slot comes to an end
  • Wear a face covering (please supply your own) when you come to our hospitals to visit or for an outpatient appointment. The covering can be made of fabric and does not need to be a medical mask. Anyone who comes to hospital in an emergency will be given a mask when they arrive
  • Make sure you observe social distancing at all times during your visit and wash/sanitise your hands regularly
  • Please do not linger in shops or communal areas of our hospitals.

NHS COVID-19 app
If you are coming to one of our hospitals, we would advise that you ‘check in’ using one of our QR codes at the main entrances and that you keep the contact tracing function of the new NHS COVID-19 app turned on. If you do receive a notification from NHS Track and Trace, you must self-isolate for the advised period of time.

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