Visitor guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update

Help us keep patients, staff and volunteers safe 

We are doing all we can to reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and protect our patients, staff and volunteers. 

This includes restricting visiting at the Great Western Hospital.

We understand that this is difficult for lots of people, but it's very important that we follow the guidelines.

Visitors will be asked to wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) and our staff will inform you of any other instructions to follow.

Please follow social distancing rules and wash your hands before entering and leaving the building, and use the alcohol hand gel frequently inside the building.

Visiting inpatients 

Normal visiting is suspended until further notice; there are only a few important exceptions, where they may be accompanied - please see the list below).

Under 16s

Young people under the age of 16 (including siblings) are not permitted unless they have been given specific permission by a clinician.

Friends and family should NOT enter the hospital building 

Family or friends should wait outside the building - preferably in their cars.

They must not wait in corridors, in the main atrium reception area or in any other communal area.

Reasons you CAN enter the hospital building

The only exceptions - when you will be permitted to enter the hospital building, are if:

  • You are collecting a patient who is leaving hospital (please contact the ward or service in advance for information on the patient's discharge plan and where to meet them)
  • You are visiting a patient who is at the end of life (please contact the ward or service in advance to discuss appropriate arrangements)
  • You are a faith leader, accompanying someone visiting a patient who is at the end of life
  • You are a parent or guardian visiting the Children's Ward, Children's Outpatients or Paediatric Assessment Unit (only one parent or guardian is allowed)
  • You are a parent or guardian visiting the Neonatal Unit/SCBU (Special Care Baby Unit) (two parents or guardians are allowed)
  • You are a birthing partner for a woman giving birth (please see also  Maternity Services)
  • You are a carer for a patient with a physical or mental disability, who would be unable to attend alone (extended visiting periods may be allowed if appropriate)
  • You are accompanying someone under the age of 16 to the Emergency Department or the Urgent Care Centre
  • You have been given specific permisssion by a clinician (we understand that there may be other exceptional circumstances, when special arrangements may be made)

If you in any doubt, please contact the ward or service in advance to discuss what's appropriate. 

Support for seriously unwell and end of life patients

We have produced a Patient Information Leaflet to help friends and relatives make the most of visits to their loved ones at the end of their lives - please see Palliative and end of life care: Information and support.

Further information 

Please see also Outpatients.

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