The hospital says it's to protect staff, patients and local communities.
Chesterfield Royal Hospital has released the following statement about it's visiting hours because of the Covid-19 outbreak:
"We have temporarily changed our visiting arrangements to with the response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and to protect our staff, patients and local communities. Fewer people on our site helps to reduce 'foot fall' and the spread of infection. We know visiting is important for peoples' wellbeing, but please consider if your visit is absolutely essential. This information provides an update - please read both sides so you have all the facts and know what to do."
Are you still allowing people to visit?
"At the moment yes - but essential visitors only - particularly on wards where we are caring for people with unexplained respiratory illness. 'Essential' is restricted to close family relatives and friends - and others that have legitimate carer responsibilities for the patient."
Are you reducing visiting hours?
"Yes - we have removed open visiting during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Visiting is strictly: 6.00pm - 8.00pm
Any exceptions MUST be agreed with the ward matron or nurse in charge"
Are there restrictions on visitor numbers?
"Yes - during the two hour period there is a strict maximum of two visitorsper patient, per day, to reduce the amount of people coming on site."
What if my relative needs extra support?
"If someone is unable to make decisions for themselves, has dementia, is critically ill or nearing the end of their life, we will talk to you and agree the best way to meet your visiting needs."
What about the birth centre and maternity?
"Mums-to-be and new mums are limited to one birth partner/visitor. Siblings and other children under the age of 16 will not be admitted to the birth centre or ward."
Can I bring children to see their relative?
"No visitors under the age of 16 will be admitted to any adult wards."
Has visiting changed on the children's ward?
"A maximum of two parents or carers to accompany each child. Please consider not bringing other children to the hospital at this time.
In addition to the guidelines on the front of this information sheet please follow these additional instructions"
During the COVID-19 outbreak all visitors MUST:
USE the hand hygiene stations to wash hands and gel hands as you arrive and leave the hospital, as you go in and out of wards and after visiting the toilet;
WEAR personal, protective equipment if instructed to do so by staff. This could be a mask, apron and gloves to protect yourself. Staff will explain why and what to do;
NOT bring food or drink on to the ward for themselves or for patients (unless this has been agreed with the nurse in charge and is part of a patient's care plan);
STAY at home if they have symptoms that could be coronavirus (COVID-19) - a new persistent cough and a temperature over 37.8 degrees;
STAY at home if they have diarrhoea and vomiting (until symptom-free for 48 hours);
NOT sit on the beds – use the bedside chairs to reduce the risk of infection spread;
RESPECT patient mealtimes - all non-urgent clinical work stops on the ward, so the meal is a social occasion that everyone can enjoy. Please try to avoid visiting at mealtimes if you can (12-1pm and 5-6pm) even if you need to ask for special arrangements. However, in agreement with the matron or nurse in charge, helping or encouraging a loved one to eat, as part of their care plan may be permitted
APPRECIATE staff are working - they may need to ask you to move for a short time so they can carry out their normal duties – such as cleaning;
RESPECT privacy and dignity - please do not take photographs of other patients and the staff caring for them. Action will be taken when un-consented pictures are posted on social media. Please consider how you would feel if it was your own relative or friend;
Speak to someone straight away - if you have any concerns or worries, so they can be resolved as quickly as possible.
Your help and support is appreciated;
AGREE any alternative arrangements with the ward matron or nurse in charge in advance of your arrival.
Visiting when there are confirmed COVID-19 cases on the ward
"In line with government and Public Health England guidance you would be informed that COVID-19 diagnosed patient is present on the ward when you visit your relative.
"Visiting is still permitted in these circumstances. The risk of contracting COVID-19 is low - as you would need to be less than two metres away from a confirmed COVID-19 patient for at least 15 minutes.
"Visitors will be told where to go for up-to-date advice and what to do if they develop symptoms.
"For more information about Coronavirus (COVID-19) go to a trusted on-line source: www.nhs.uk/coronavirus"