Coronavirus - general information
Important information about the coronavirus (COVID-19)
** We have suspended visiting, barring some exceptions, in line with national guidance - please see our pages here and thank you for your understanding. Everyone coming to our hospital should now wear a face covering. Read more here **
The latest health information about Coronavirus (COVID-19) can be found on the NHS website.
Stay at home if you have coronavirus symptoms.
Stay at home if you have either:
- a high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
- a new, continuous cough – this means you've started coughing repeatedly
- a loss of, or change in, normal sense of taste or smell
Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you're staying at home.
Testing for coronavirus is not needed if you're staying at home.
How long to stay at home
- if you have symptoms, stay at home for 7 days
- if you live with other people, they should stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person got symptoms
- If you live with someone who is 70 or over, has a long-term condition, is pregnant or has a weakened immune system, try to find somewhere else for them to stay for 14 days.
If you have to stay at home together, try to keep away from each other as much as possible. Read advice about staying at home.
Resources for the public
Our dedicated page has lots of patient information and guidance - see it here
Changes to appointments
As the Chief Medical Officer for the NHS has recently stated in the media, routine NHS services will inevitably come under pressure as the coronavirus spreads. The NHS has well-established protocols to respond to situations such as this and we have been advised on what steps we can take.
Please call us before cancelling your appointment as we may be able to offer an alternative option. Please see your appointment letter for the contact details.
Telephone and video appointments
As part of our response to the coronavirus, some appointments are being carried out by telephone or video call. Patients affected by this can be reassured that cases have been reviewed by a doctor or a nurse who has concluded that it is safe for you to be offered a telephone or video appointment. Patients who are offered these appointments do not need to come to hospital and a relevant doctor or nurse will telephone you, or you will be sent guidance on how to access your video appointment through a smart device instead.
See our page on video appointments
Non-elective operations and procedures
As the Chief Medical Officer has stated, NHS services are likely to come under intense pressure as the coronavirus spreads, and we need to ensure that we have as many beds available as possible to care for patients with severe respiratory problems when the number of infections peaks.
Therefore, in line with well-established plans for situations like this, every hospital in England has now been asked to suspend all non-urgent elective operations from 15 April for at least three months, with some other procedures likely to be rescheduled before then so we can train our staff and adapt certain areas.
Urgent and emergency cases and cancer treatments will be carrying on as normal, but we know many people waiting for treatment will be disappointed or worried, and we will be contacting everyone affected as soon as possible.
Changes to hospital visiting times
In line with national NHS guidance and to keep our patients safe, we have introduced restricted visiting. There are some exceptions to the restrictions and you can read about visiting hours here.
We thank you for your support at this time and apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.
Patients with cancer
For all the latest advice and contact information - please see our Trust page
Everyone is being reminded to follow Public Health England advice to:
- Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze. Then bin the tissue, and wash your hands, or use a sanitiser gel.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using public transport. Use a sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
More information can be found on the NHS website here