The Trust has made some important decisions which will reduce the number of people attending our hospitals and community services in person.
These measures are in addition to the Government rules on coronavirus.
Patient visiting suspended
All visiting is suspended, except for the exemptions listed below.
If you should be self-isolating, i.e. staying at home because you have or may have coronavirus, you must not visit our hospitals, even if you meet the exemption criteria.
Guidance on when to self-isolate is available on the NHS website.
If you are self-isolating, please use other ways of keeping in touch with your loved ones, such as phone and video calls or our "letters for loved ones" and "parcels for patients" initiatives.
Visits from all friends and relatives of patients are currently suspended on all our hospital sites, except in the following circumstances:
- Two parents or guardians may visit children aged under 18, but only one of these visitors may be in the hospital at any one time
- If social distancing can be maintained, a maximum of two close family members or other people important to a patient at the end of their life may visit during the last 24 to 48 hours of the patient's life, or when the patient has passed away. If social distancing between these visitors is not possible, then only one may attend
- One person may visit to support a patient who has dementia, a learning disability or autism, if this visitor not being present would cause the patient to be distressed
- One person may, where the ward manager or nurse in charge agrees it is in the patient's best interests and at a time and date arranged in advance, visit a patient with a mental health condition if required to support the patient's well-being or decisions about their care
- Patients may be accompanied where appropriate and necessary to assist with the patient’s communication and/or to meet the patient’s health, social or spiritual care needs. For example a patient who has is deaf or is confused may need support with their communication, as may a patient who has a brain injury. Where possible, please contact the ward or department in advance to discuss local considerations so that any appropriate arrangements can be made
- If, as part of the patient's care plan, a DNACPR (Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) order is agreed, a visit should be arranged to support the patient
- A visit prior to surgery may be arranged if family are being informed that the patient may not survive
- Children are not generally permitted to visit, however consideration will be given to under 18s attending with appropriate support in exceptional circumstances
Specific restrictions apply to visiting maternity patients.
In our A&E departments:
- Anyone accompanying a patient to A&E is asked to wait outside or go home. Please wait to hear from staff whether or not the patient will be admitted or discharged, as we understand you may wish to take your friend/relative home
- A parent can stay with a child up to the age of 18
- One person may accompany the patient in A&E if they meet the exemption criteria listed above
- In addition, if the patient has a mental health condition, learning disability or autism and unit staff are escorting the patient, these individuals should also be permitted and are not counted as a visitor
Please contact the ward or department in advance to discuss appropriate visiting arrangements.
Additional requirements for visitors
- If permitted to return for further visits, authorised visitors will be issued with a visitor pass
- The authorised visitor(s) for a patient must be the same person/people for each visit. Visitors may not swap, unless permitted by the exemption criteria outlined above
- Visitors and carers attending a site which has been declared free of coronavirus must meet the exemption criteria for visitors listed above, and must have self-isolated along with the patient for 14 days before the patient's admission
- On arrival to any ward or department, permitted visitors should immediately wash their hands and report to a senior sister or charge nurse
- Visitors must also wash their hands or use the hand gel when they leave wards
- Appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) will be provided to visitors as required
Thank you for your continued support with this difficult decision that will help us to better protect staff, visitors and patients from infection.
Maternity restrictions (updated 15 January 2021)
We recognise and understand how important the support of your chosen support partner is.
We have reviewed the policy for the attendance of partners at every stage of the maternity journey, while taking into consideration the increasing infection rates.
The safety of patients and staff is our priority and unfortunately we cannot yet safely allow all women to have a support partner present at all times.
- Your chosen birth partner may be with you in the Willow Midwifery Led Unit or delivery suite when you are in labour and at the birth of your baby. They may then be with you on the postnatal ward for a short time. They will then be asked to go home and return once discharge has been arranged
- Women with significant needs will have plans completed on an individual basis
- While in hospital, you will be asked to wear a facemask at all times, except when in labour. Birth partners will need to wear personal protective equipment and maintain social distancing
- We ask that patients follow our COVID-19 testing process
- Extended family (grandparents for example) are not permitted to visit you and your baby
- Unless you have been advised otherwise by a member of our team, all outpatient appointments in our hospitals or in the community should be unaccompanied. Only the woman may attend
Please discuss any exceptional circumstances with your midwife to ensure we are able to agree and confirm these before your appointment.
We are working towards full implementation of the guidance as quickly as possible. Some of the changes needed across the Local Maternity System will take longer in some hospitals than others. This may mean support partners are allowed back into some of these hospitals at different times. We will publish any changes to our policies as soon as we can.
You must not attend your face-to-face appointment if you should be self-isolating because you, or somebody close to you, has, or has had, symptoms.
To ensure your outpatient consultation takes place in the most appropriate setting, your referral will be looked at by a hospital doctor who will decide the next steps. This could be a virtual consultation via telephone or video, or a face-to-face appointment in clinic.
Unless we have contacted you to cancel or rearrange your consultation, please attend as planned. This is really important, whether you have a virtual consultation or a face-to-face appointment.
Further information for people attending face-to-face appointments, including details of who can accompany them to their appointments, is available on our advice page.
External company representatives visiting the Trust
No external company representatives are to attend UHB sites unless the training/medical equipment they are bringing with them are essential for the treatment of a patient.
Advice for patient groups
Information for some specific groups of patients is now available from the Trust. We will add new information here as it becomes available.
Keeping in touch
As all-but-essential visiting has been suspended on our hospital sites during the ongoing coronavirus situation, we'd like to make it easier for you to keep in touch with your friends or family members while they're in hospital.
Patients are actively encouraged to call home using their own phone, or a members of staff will support them to use a ward mobile phone (cleaned with a disinfectant wipe before and after each use). Where patients are too poorly to make their own call home, we will ensure their named contact receives a daily update call (with patient consent, where appropriate) which will include information such as ward moves and discharge plans.
Tablet devices are available for patients to use on request and are a great way for families to be able to see each other. Many of the tablets on the wards have been kindly donated by UHB Charity.
"Letters for loved ones": send a message to a friend or family member
Many patients will be able to pick up the phone and call or message their friends and family members themselves. However, not all will be able to do this. Our "letters for loved ones" service allows you to email us a message or letter for a patient who is in hospital.
Parcels for Patients
The Parcels for Patients (P4P) service enables friends and relatives to deliver essential care packages to their loved ones via hospital volunteers.
Bereavement information for friends and family
We have prepared some practical information to help you if you've lost somebody.
We're looking for doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, healthcare support workers, facilities staff and administration staff to join our team and help us in the fight against coronavirus.
Thank you for your interest in volunteering. Due to the high volume of applications received, we have temporarily paused our volunteer recruitment programme.
Should we begin recruiting volunteers again, further information will be made available here.
Offers and donations for NHS workers
We're grateful for your consideration at this time. In order to ensure that your kind offer gets to our 22,000 staff, please contact the the Health and Well-being Team.
Nightingale Hospital Birmingham
For information on Nightingale Hospital Birmingham, which is led by University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, please the new hospital's website.
Off-site blood testing service
University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHB) is currently temporarily providing blood test services at local off-site locations including Birmingham New Street Railway Station and Yardley Green Road. This is so that patients have the option, if it is more convenient, of attending their blood test appointments at a location outside of the Trust’s hospitals.
The service will allow patients to have their blood tests taken without going into one of the Trust’s hospitals. Contact with others is kept to a minimum, which means that the service is good for those that are currently shielding.
Patients will be able to access the service by appointment only and will be contacted by UHB to be booked into a slot.