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Current restricted visiting access

Latest visitor restrictions - updated 22 February 2024

University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust continues to take all necessary precautions to protect patients and staff from COVID-19 and other infections such as respiratory illnesses and norovirus that circulate.

We need support from the community as we take these steps in order to help protect our staff and the patients in their care.

Please continue to wash your hands and use sanitiser stations available across the site. You can read the latest mask wearing requirements on this page.

Visiting arrangements effective from 22 February 2024

Normal visiting arrangements have resumed at UHS, following a period of enhanced measures in response to a rise in infection rates.

That means with immediate effect we will be allowing normal visiting arrangements, except in areas that have specific infection prevention measures in place.

Masks should still be worn:

  • In areas where there is specific infection prevention guidance in place
  • If you have symptoms of a respiratory virus

Otherwise, mask wearing will now be at the discretion of the individual and is no longer a standard requirement across adult clinical areas.

All inpatients can have a maximum of two visitors at a time by the bedside, between the hours of 2pm and 8pm.

For child health, maternity and neonatal areas other arrangements outside of this can be made in agreement with the nurse in charge, consultant or another appropriate healthcare professional involved in the patient's care.

Exceptions can be made:

  • If a patient is receiving end of life care or in other compassionate or exceptional circumstances, in agreement with the nurse in charge, consultant or other clinician.
  • For carers or people providing support - visiting should be permitted when this is beneficial to a patient's care. Examples include, but are not limited to, a carer who is supporting someone with a mental health issue such as dementia, a learning disability or autism, where not being present would cause the patient to be distressed; a carer who outside of the hospital provides the care for a patient with complex health needs. Visiting in this situation is not limited to a specific time and will be determined by the specific circumstances of the patient. This may include a carer staying with the patient for up to 24 hours a day. Carers who are staying with the patient during their hospital stay should be tested for COVID-19 twice weekly, using laboratory PCR testing.
  • For partners of women requiring support through antenatal and scan attendances, induction of labour, during labour, as well as the postnatal period (as per visiting guidance for maternity services).
  • If the visitors are the parents or appropriate adults visiting or supporting a child (as per visiting guidance for the Children’s Hospital).
  • For a patient attending the emergency department admission units - they may be accompanied by one person e.g. family member, or somebody important to the patient to support the patient at the initial point of admission.
  • Patients may be accompanied to outpatient or diagnostic appointments by one person. Guidance for outpatient departments should be followed in relation to patients and visitors attending these areas.

Key measures will remain in place in order to maintain the safety of patients, staff and visitors:

  • Members of the staff retain the right to refuse entry to visitors or otherwise manage visitor numbers if an area becomes over crowded or becomes subject to specific and enhanced infection prevention measures.
  • Members of the public should not attend any health or care settings if they are displaying any symptoms of COVID-19, other respiratory viruses or symptoms of viral gastro-enteritis, unless seeking urgent medical treatment.
  • Anyone showing symptoms of COVID-19, other respiratory viruses or symptoms of viral gastroenteritis must not visit, even if these symptoms are mild or intermittent, due to the risk they pose to others.
  • Anyone who has recently been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 is advised not to visit unless they have taken a negative lateral flow test.

Hand hygiene and other measures should be followed, including enhancing ventilation in areas by opening doors/windows; maintaining distance from others wherever possible; avoiding over-crowding in rooms and spaces; regular cleaning of surfaces and equipment.

Compassionate visitation

As above, please discuss with the relevant ward any further requests for compassionate visitation. 

If patients or visitors are unsure whether they should access the Trust, please speak to the clinical team in charge of your loved one's care.