An update on visiting at Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals
Visiting is no longer restricted to two hours, and visiting is no longer required to be booked by telephone. Please ensure that you visit during the normal ward visiting times. Please note that no more than two people should visit a patient at any given time.
Update to Infection Prevention and Control Guidance
As we enter the winter months, there is likely to be an increase in the number of respiratory viruses, including influenza and COVID, that are circulating in the community and in the number of patients being admitted to hospital with these infections.
In line with current national guidance provided by the UK Health Security Agency, there is no longer a mandatory requirement for visitors, patients and staff entering our hospitals to wear a face mask. For those who prefer to continue to wear a mask, fluid resistant surgical masks will be readily available at our main hospital entrances. Please do help yourself. If you cannot see any then please ask a member of staff on the ward/clinic that you are attending. In our clinical areas, such as wards, where our staff are caring for patients with respiratory infections, you may see staff will wear masks, along with other personal protective equipment, as necessary. They can advise you if you have any queries.
We continuously monitor the local situation, and should we see a significant increase in the number of respiratory infections in our hospitals, then we may revise our advice, as necessary.
We ask everyone to follow these basic infection prevention and control measures in our hospitals:
- Do not visit the hospital if you have the following symptoms:
- New onset cough or an ongoing cough that is not improving
- Raised temperature
- Diarrhoea and/or vomiting
- If you do have these symptoms and visiting is essential, and cannot be delayed for a few days whilst you recover, e.g. the patient is very unwell / dying, then please telephone the ward concerned and ask to speak to the nurse-in-charge. We are always keen to support visiting in these situations.
- Practice good respiratory hygiene: cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing using a tissue or the inside of your elbow. Dispose of tissues immediately following use and clean your hands.
- Clean your hands on entering and leaving our clinical areas, e.g. wards, using the hand wash basins or alcohol hand sanitiser available inside each patient multi-bed bay and single rooms.
- Visitors are not routinely required to wear disposable gloves and plastic aprons; but should be worn if you are helping the patient with their personal hygiene care.
Thank you for your continued support in keeping our patients, staff and visitors safe.
David Fluck, Medical Director and Director of Infection Prevention and Control
Ellen Bull. Interim Chief Nurse
The Infection Prevention and Control Team
Information for Inpatients
Information about ward routines and facilities can be found in our “Welcome to your Ward” booklet, which you will be given when you arrive on the ward.
Select the options below to find out more:
▶ Why have I been admitted and how long will I be in hospital?
You will receive a full explanation as to why you have been admitted to hospital, advised of assessments and investigations e.g. X-ray, blood tests, visits from other professionals. To plan for your discharge, you and your carer will be informed by your consultant or at your preoperative assessment, how long you are likely to be in hospital including outcomes of each these assessments.
▶ Which ward will I be admitted to?
If you are coming into hospital for a planned operation you will come in to the Admissions Lounge prior to surgery. The Admissions Lounge is situated adjacent to Heron Ward, Level 3, main building. Following your operation / treatment you will be taken to a ward appropriate to your needs.
▶ What will happen when I arrive on my Ward?
When you arrive on your ward, a member of the ward team will welcome you and help you to settle in.
Whilst there is no objection to you leaving the ward, for your own safety we would ask that you check with ward staff before you go and when you return.
In the interests of your personal safety, you will be given an identity bracelet to wear during your stay. Please check that your details are correct and inform a member of the ward staff if they are not.
▶ What do I do if I have any allergy?
If you have any allergies please ensure the Ward Manager or Nurse in Charge are informed of this as soon as you are admitted. Please also discuss this with the doctors looking after you. Ward staff will give you a red bracelet to wear to alert anyone involved with your care to your allergy.
▶ How can I identify Hospital Staff?
All staff within the Trust are issued with name badges and photographic ID cards which should be visible at all times. If staff are not appropriately identified then you should ask them to show you their identification and to wear it appropriately.
Do not allow anyone who does not have identification to treat you, take any details from you or have access to/remove your property. If you have any concerns please inform a member of staff.
Our Matrons are responsible for the quality of care that we provide. They wear bright red uniforms and are easily identified. Our Matrons visit their wards every day and you are free to speak to them whenever you see them. The nursing staff can also contact your Matron if you wish to see them specifically.
▶ What happens when I give consent for an operation?
Patients who need to have an operation will have the purpose, risks and benefits of the procedure explained to them by their consultant or a member of his / her team.
It is important to us that you understand the treatment options available to you and staff caring for you will work closely with you to ensure you understand the plan for your care, including operations or any available alternative treatments (this includes no treatment). These options will be discussed and explored with you and information to help you make decisions will be provided.
If you feel you would like more information or that you do not really understand your options, please ask to speak with your Consultant or a member of their Team.
Once you have decided to have an operation, you will be offered a copy of a consent form for signature. An anaesthetist will see you on the day of your operation and will discuss the anaesthesia, recovery and pain relief.
▶ Will I be with other patients of the same sex?
At Ashford and St. Peter’s Trust, we are committed to respecting the privacy and dignity of our patients and work to ensure that men and women do not share sleeping accommodation and bathroom facilities. Some wards are either male or female. Other Wards are designated by specialty to provide the highest standard of care. These Wards are mixed gender but consist of bays that are single sex only, with either en-suite or nearby single sex bathrooms.
This hospital operates a zero tolerance to allowing men and women to share sleeping accommodation. However, in very exceptional circumstances, due to clinical need, it may be necessary to transfer you to a mixed gender area. You and your family will be consulted prior to this and arrangements will be made to ensure you do not remain in this area for more than 12 hours.
Patients admitted to our critical care areas, such as the Intensive Care Unit, require a much higher level of care due to their critical condition and so these areas are not single sex. Your privacy and dignity is of the utmost importance to us so staff in these areas will do all they can to meet these requirements.
If you are unhappy with your sleeping area or bathroom facilities from a privacy and dignity point of view please speak with the Ward Manager or Matron.
▶ Patient meals
Information about meal times is available in the “Welcome to your Ward” leaflet, which you will be given on admission. Our daily menus are available on our patient meals page.
If light snacks are brought in by your relatives, please ensure that ‘sell by’ dates are valid and that the food package is marked with your name.
It is Trust policy not to store food in fridges, so please avoid chilled goods and short-term perishables.
There are no facilities on wards for reheating food.
▶ The Ward at night
Hospitals are busy places, providing 24-hour patient care. Your comfort, rest and sleep is very important, however essential nursing and medical activity does continue throughout the night. Ward staff will make every effort to minimise disruption to patients during the night. Please do not hesitate to let the Ward Manager or Nurse in Charge know if you are disturbed by noise at night.
▶ Moving to another ward or hospital
You may be moved to another bay, ward, or hospital if:
- You are not on the ward of the Consultant who is treating you and responsible for your care.
- You are due to be discharged or transferred from hospital shortly and you no longer require an acute bed.
- There is a change in your medical care requirements.
Staff will keep you fully informed and involved if there is a need to move you to a different location.
We try to ensure no moves take place after 22.00 hours.
Cleaning is carried out “in-house” and catering is provided by an external company. If you have any comments about these services please inform the Ward Manager or Nurse in Charge.
▶ What if I would like to have private care?
For patients at St. Peter’s Hospital, the adjacent Runnymede Hospital or Nuffield Hospital provide private care.
If you would like to use existing private insurance or have any other enquiries please ask the ward / department staff who will notify the Head of Capacity Management or, alternatively, please notify your Consultant’s secretary.
▶ Patients / visitors who wish to make recordings
It is Trust policy, with the Ward Manager’s consent, to allow patients/visitors to photograph or film themselves whilst on Trust premises. However, under no circumstances are patients/visitors allowed to make any recording which might include another patient/visitor/member of staff without their express consent. Trust staff have the right to ask patients/visitors to refrain from making recordings if they deem it to be inappropriate in any way.
▶ Visiting Hours
Please note that normal visiting hours are 2pm – 8pm.
- Visiting hours for Birch Acute Cardiac Unit (BACU) are 3-4:30pm and 6-8pm only. Only 2 visitors at a time and no children below 12 years old.
- Visiting in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) is permitted from 1pm, with a recommended two hour slot (this is flexible). Please contact the unit to agree visiting as appropriate.
- If you are visiting a patient on Chestnut ward, please continue to ring the ward prior to your visit to arrange.
- In Maternity, please note that siblings are permitted to visit but no other children.
Please note that no more than two people should visit a patient at any given time.
The exceptions are:
|Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC)||Monday to Friday: 8am to 8pm with the last referral at 5pm
Saturday and Sunday: 9am to 6pm with the last referral at 4pm
|Cedar Ward||3pm to 4.30pm and 6pm to 8pm|
|Surgical Wards (Falcon Ward, Kingfisher Ward, and Robin Ward)||Midday to 8pm|
|Dickens Ward||3pm to 4:30 pm and 6pm to 8pm|
|Swan and Heron Ward||12 midday to 8pm|
|Joan Booker||Joan Booker visiting details|
|Labour Ward||Labour Ward visiting details|
|Ash Ward (paediatrics)||Weekdays 2pm to 7pm and weekends, 12 midday to 8pm|
|Oak Ward (paediatrics)||Anytime within reason|
|Critical Care (ICU and HDU)||Critical Care details|
|Special Care Baby Unit||Anytime for close family|
If your visitors cannot visit during these hours they are welcome to speak with the Ward Manager or Nurse in Charge to make alternative arrangements.
▶ Protected rest time
We offer all our patients protected rest time after lunch, usually between 12:30 and 13:30 to help as part of the recovery process. We do not allow visiting, ward rounds or procedures to take place during this time, unless it would be detrimental to a patient not to do so.
▶ Advice for visitors
We recognise that visiting a person in hospital plays a vital part in aiding their recovery. We encourage visitors to take part in social interaction with patients and to share in their care where appropriate.
Please respect other patients when visiting and keep noise to a minimum. We therefore ask that no more than two people visit a patient at any one time.
All visitors should use chairs provided and not use the patient’s bed to sit on.
To respect patient privacy, visitors may be asked to leave the bedside when doctors are doing their ward rounds, or when a doctor or nurse needs to provide care to a patient.
It would be helpful if you would not visit patients in the hospital if you are suffering from a cold, flu, and tummy bug or any illness you think could be passed on to patients in the hospital. If you are in any doubt please telephone the ward staff for information.
Children are welcome to visit patients providing they are accompanied by an adult. Unless absolutely necessary, please try not to bring in children under the age of 10.
It is recommended that you speak to the Nurse in Charge before bringing young children on to the ward. They should be supervised at all times to ensure that noise is kept to a minimum and they do not run around or climb on beds or ward equipment.