Visiting information and keeping in touch

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Click here for our ‘Visiting Information Poster’

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

We are very pleased to welcome visitors to our hospitals, Airedale General and Castleberg.

The health, safety and wellbeing of our patients, communities and staff, remains our priority. We understand that families are eager to visit their loved ones, but we need to ensure this is done safely and national advice for infection prevention is followed.

Our wards can be very busy environments. To ensure all patients have the opportunity to see their loved ones, there may be occasions when we ask you to leave the ward temporarily, to help us safely manage visiting numbers.

When you visit, we ask that you are respectful of other patients’ privacy, dignity and need for rest.

We’d like to thank you for your support and understanding during this time.

Visits are:

  • Limited to two visitors per day
  • Up to two hours duration only
  • Between 1:00pm-8:00pm
  • A faith leader may also visit as an extra visitor
  • A face mask will be required in wards and clinical areas. You do not need to wear one in other parts of the building such as the corridors or the restaurant
  • Children under 16 are allowed to visit, however it is not always advisable and is at the risk of their parent/guardian. Children should be part of the two visitors and not in addition.

When you should not visit:

If you have any symptoms of COVID-19 or other respiratory infection (cold/flu symptoms) or sickness bug.

Visiting guidance

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.
  • Outpatient Department – One person may accompany a patient to clinic appointments.

Visiting in Maternity

Pre-natal Scans

  • Women will be allowed to have one adult in attendance with them for ultrasound scans. This person ideally should be the birthing partner or from the same household or bubble. Children are not permitted in the ultrasound room.

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 the labour ward can discuss and arrange this for you.

Ward 21

  • Your one main birth partner can be with you from 9am to 8pm.
  • Between 2pm – 4 pm you may have 2 other visitors (for example friend/relative)
  • Between 3pm and 6pm: women’s own children may visit (with first named birth partner only)

Any requests for visiting outside of these times will need to be discussed with  the Midwife in charge.

Neonatal Unit

  • 2 named patients/ guardians can visit

Visiting the Children’s Ward (Ward 17)

  • Children on ward 17 may now also be visited by a second visitor/sibling between 11am-7pm

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 e.g. 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.

How do I arrange a visit?

You no longer need to book your visit in advance for most of our wards.

You should contact the ward before your visit if:

  • You are visiting the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) on Ward 26
  • Your are visiting Harden Ward at Castleberg Hospital
  • You would like to discuss visiting outside of the usual hours (exceptional circumstances only)

What to expect when you visit our hospitals

hospital entrance
It optional whether you wear a mask in hospital communal, non-clinical areas and hospital corridors.  Masks must still be worn on wards and in clinical areas. Masks are available at the hospital and ward entrances.

Please ask the clinical department that you are visiting for specific guidance on mask wearing in that area.

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

Please stay to the left of all corridors as marked on the floor.  You should dispose of your mask at the PPE bins provided.

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

Sending hugs

If you are unable to visit your loved one in hospital, we have set up a dedicated ‘Sending Hugs’ service so you can send them get well wishes.

We can also supply and send your loved one a greetings card with a message of your choice.

Upon receipt of your request we 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.