In response to increasing numbers of COVID-19 cases across
County Durham and today's Government announcement regarding local
increased restriction measures, County Durham and Darlington NHS
Foundation Trust is suspending visiting at all of its hospitals
from 9am on Friday 18 September.
The numbers of cases across County Durham continue to rise and
the Trust has therefore taken the difficult decision to reintroduce
the suspension of visiting across all inpatient adult wards at the
The temporary suspension will be reintroduced from 9am on Friday
18 September to protect both staff and patients and the
restrictions have been extended to include Darlington Memorial
Hospital as some patients, who may live in County Durham, will have
pathways of care which include an appointment or treatment at
Darlington Memorial Hospital.
The move also includes reintroducing restrictions on maternity
services and while one birthing partner can continue to be present
during labour, restrictions will now be back in place regarding the
attendance of partners at scan appointments and visiting on
Noel Scanlon, Executive Director of Nursing said: "We very much
recognise this is not the news our patients and their loved ones
will want to hear and it is not a decision we have taken lightly.
However, we must act quickly and responsibly in light of the rising
cases and the latest Government announcement to protect our
workforce and our patients.
"Coronavirus has not gone away and it is so important that we
all do our bit to protect ourselves and others, especially those
who are the most vulnerable in our communities. Everyone should
continue to follow the Government guidance which means washing your
hands regularly with soap and water for 20 seconds or more, social
distancing and wearing face masks or coverings to minimise the risk
of spreading the virus. We would also ask that anyone feeling
unwell or showing any symptoms of COVID-19 does not come into our
hospitals but should arrange to be tested as soon as possible."
There are a few exemptions from the visiting suspension which
are as follows:
Anyone attending an outpatient appointment and those coming into
the Emergency Departments at University Hospital of North Durham or
Darlington Memorial Hospital should attend alone, unless they are
patients with dementia, a learning disability or autism and those
who require a carer and they will be able to have one person
accompanying them. The public are reminded that they will need to
wear a face mask or covering, practice good hand hygiene and
maintain social distancing at all times.
Earlier in the year, the Trust was able to purchase a number of
ipads through charitable funds and support from NHS Charities
Together and these will continue to be used to help patients stay
in touch with loved ones while the temporary restrictions are back
in place. The Trust also has a 'stay in touch' messaging service
which can be used by loved ones to send photos or messages to
patients. More information is available on the Trust's website: www.cddft.nhs.uk
Symptoms of coronavirus include a high temperature, new
continuous cough and a loss or change in your sense of taste and
smell. If you experience any of these symptoms, you must
isolate immediately and call 119 and arrange for a test.
If you develop symptoms your household contacts will also be
required to self-isolate. More information on self-isolation is
available on the NHS
Published 17th September 2020
'Every aspect of my emergency care was dealt with quickly,
efficiently and professionally with full explanations and
compassion from all staff involved'.
Patient, Emergency Department, Darlington Memorial Hospital