Visiting information and keeping in touch

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Read our latest patient information leaflet on visiting 

As well as visiting in person we offer lots of new services  – such as virtual visiting – to help you keep in touch with your family and friends in hospital.

If you’d like to use any of these services contact our patient experience team on

01535 294019 or anhsft.patientadvice@nhs.net

Virtual Visits should be arranged directly with the ward

Member of staff doing a virtual visit with an ipad

The health, safety and wellbeing of our patients, communities and teams remain our absolute priority.  As part of this, we need to ensure that visiting loved ones in our hospital is done safely, ensuring social distancing and other government advice is followed.

We appreciate how hard it has been to keep in touch with loved ones who are in hospital with restrictions in place. Thank you for your support and understanding during this difficult time.

We will continue to review our visiting arrangements in line with national guidance and the local infection rates, so please be aware we may need to change this guidance at short notice.

We continue to ask you to wear a face covering whilst visiting our hospitals.

We recommend that visitors do a lateral flow test before visiting the hospital and only visit if the test is negative.

Visiting guidance

For Covid-negative inpatients, visits are:

  • Open to two close family contacts or people important to the patient
  • A faith leader may also visit as an extra visitor
  • Up to one hour duration, daily
    Between the hours of 1pm-7pm

For Covid-positive inpatients, visits are as above, but limited to only one visitor.

Please speak to the nurse in charge and wear any extra protective equipment that is offered.

Other departments:

  • Emergency Department – we are very busy currently so please come unattended if you can. At any point we may need to restrict the number of people we can accommodate in the department to ensure we can safely socially distance, and your cooperation is appreciated.
  • Acute Assessment Unit (AAU) – one person may accompany a patient to get settled in, then after 24 hours of admission one visitor may book for a same day appointment. You cannot book visits further in advance as patients are likely to move.
  • For information on maternity visiting go to our maternity page click here
  • One person may accompany a patient to Outpatient clinic appointments.

Visiting in Maternity

Labour Ward

During labour one birth partner can be with you at all times.

If you are admitted for induction of labour in our induction bay your main birth partner can remain with you from 10am until 8pm.

If you are required to stay on labour ward for a prolonged period of time after your birth you will be able to pre book a 1 hour slot for a second visitor to visit you. Your Midwife on labour ward can discuss and arrange this for you after your birth.

Ward 21

Your 1 main birth partner can now be with you from 10am to 8pm.

You can also pre-book a one hour slot for a second visitor. This may be another adult or a child, this needs to be pre-booked in order for us to still comply with social distancing between staff, yourself and your visitors. Any requests for visiting outside of this will need to be discussed with and prearranged by the Midwife in charge.

If you are Covid positive we can currently only permit one visitor to be with you.

Exceptional circumstances

Please discuss with a member of staff about how we can facilitate visiting more flexibly in the following circumstances:

  • Carers for patients who require assistance eg supporting someone with a mental health condition, dementia, delirium, a learning disability or autism, where not being present would cause the patient to be distressed.
  • Immediate family members/partners of those at end of life.
  • You may be required to wear additional PPE. Please follow all instructions given by our
    staff carefully, they will guide you to remove and dispose of all the personal protective
    equipment appropriately.
  • Visiting may be temporarily suspended if there is a shortage of required PPE.

How do I arrange a visit?

How do I arrange a visit?

  • Contact the ward to discuss appropriate arrangements
  • You should contact the ward in advance to arrange visits for the following day or later that week

Please do not travel to the hospital if you have not discussed your visit with the ward staff first.

What to expect when you visit our hospitals

hospital entrance
You must always wear a mask coming into the hospital building. These are supplied at the hospital entrances. If arriving on public transport you will be required to wear your own mask to travel.
clock
Do not arrive too early for your visit and leave the ward as soon as your visit has finished. You should not visit any other part of the hospital. Each visit will last one hour maximum.
hands and soap
Clean your hands using the disinfectant hand sanitiser provided or soap and water where available: – on arrival to the hospital on entering the ward/department – when putting on or taking off any personal protective equipment (PPE) or face coverings – on leaving the patient’s bed space – on leaving the ward or department – on leaving the hospital building – as soon as you get home.
distance sign
The Trust follows government two metre social distancing guidance wherever possible in the hospital. You are asked to adhere to this during your visit, including all communal areas and lifts. You will witness that this is not possible for staff when caring for patients.
You will not be required to self-isolate following your visit, as your risk from virus transmission will have been minimised by following the visiting guidance.
exit sign
You should then follow the signs to leave the department. Please stay to the left of all corridors as marked on the floor. Please do not visit any other part of the hospital. You should dispose of your mask at the bin by the exit of the hospital.

Virtual visiting

We are offering a virtual visiting service using iPads so you can virtually meet with your loved one. They will be supported with the visit by a member of our ward staff.

What do I need for a visit?

You need an email address, a Wi-Fi connection or mobile data and a smart device (Apple or Android) or PC/Laptop with webcam and microphone. Watch this short video for more information

How long are visits?

We’re suggesting 20-30 minutes for a visit.

Can more than one relative join a visit?

Yes but we do not suggest more than two people joining at once. You will both need to login to the waiting room on your separate devices.

How do I arrange a visit?

You should contact the ward directly to arrange your visit and they will discuss a mutually agreed time with you.

What do I need to do?

At the time agreed with the ward, you should click into one of the waiting rooms below. Please only click the link if you have pre-booked a visit.

If you’re not familiar with the technology, test the link in advance of your visit to check it works.

For wards 9, 13, 14, 18, 19 and AAU, please use this link:
https://nhs.vc/virtual-visiting-for-families-carers-hot-wards

For wards 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, Castleberg, Neonatal and Maternity please use this link:
https://nhs.vc/virtual-visiting-for-families-and-carers

For Intensive Care Unit (ICU) please use this link:
https://nhs.vc/icu-virtual-visiting

If you have a visit that you have arranged with our Chaplaincy Department please use this link:

https://nhs.vc/AiredaleChaplaincy 

I’m having problems, what should I do?

  • Ensure you have allowed the website to access the camera and microphone on your device
  • Ensure you have opened the link in Google, Google Chrome or Safari
  • If you are using an iPhone or iPad, close other apps running in the background on your device
  • Our ward staff may have arranged a time with you but may be delayed, wait for up to 10 minutes and contact the ward if you are still waiting to be seen after this time

'With You' voice messages

We are delighted to be taking part in a pilot project with charity, Trigger Stuff.

Would you like to send your loved one voice messages to listen to whilst they are in hospital?

With You is a free messaging service that anyone can use to create and send voice messages to a loved one in care.

How it works:

  • Visit the website and create an account
  • Get a unique pin and phone number
  • Share the number and pin with family and friends encouraging them to leave messages of hope and positivity
  • Review and edit your messages and create one audio track
  • Email the track directly to your loved one if they have their own device to listen to it
  • The hospital has headphones available for use
  • If your loved one is staying with us on ICU, we can arrange to play the track to your loved one on a device available on the ward. Contact the ICU directly if you’d like to arrange this

Please note we will not accept audio tracks with malicious, hateful or offensive content

For more information, click here

Care Parcels and activity packs

You can arrange to send a Care Parcel to your loved one during their hospital stay. The package is a small bundle of items to help your loved one to feel more comfortable during their time in hospital. A card will accompany each parcel and you can customise a short message.

We aim to deliver parcels within 24 hours.

We also have a Dignity Room which can provide patients with clean clothing and nightwear, should they arrive in hospital without their belongings.

In addition to this, we have developed a series of activity packs for patients to keep people occupied whilst on our wards. The packs include puzzles, quizzes, colouring in tec. If you’d like to request a pack, please contact us.

Contact our patient experience team on

01535 294019 or anhsft.patientadvice@nhs.net

if you’d like to use any of these services (Virtual Visits should be arranged directly with the ward).

Virtual hugs

During this time, when families and friends are not able to visit their loved ones in hospital, we have set up a dedicated ‘Sending Hugs’ service so you can send your loved one get well wishes with a letter and a couple of photos.

We can also supply and send your loved one a greetings card with a message of your choice.  Our team of volunteers will deliver these to the wards.

Upon receipt of your request our team of volunteers will:

– print your letter and laminate any photographs OR
– print your e-card or hand write one

If you would like to make a request, please email anhsft.virtualvisiting@nhs.net attaching the letter and photographs.

You can design your card using this website. Once finished, email it to the above address. We will print it off for you and send it to your loved one.

If you are not able to send us an email, please phone 01535 294027

You must provide your loved one’s (the patient’s) full name, date of birth and ward they are staying on.

There is no charge for the Sending Hugs service; however any donations to our Airedale Hospital & Community Charity are greatly appreciated.