NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde suspends all hospital visits

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) has suspended visiting at all hospitals to protect patients and staff from coronavirus.

The health board has issued the notice effective immediately, adding there will be some exempt “essential visitors”.

But the announcement stated only one person can attend at any given time, and no children are permitted to visit.

Angela O’Neill, deputy nurse director, said: “In these extraordinary circumstances, we have made the decision to suspend all visiting from our hospitals.

“This is to protect our patients, staff and public from Covid-19.

“We understand this will be difficult – visitors are normally warmly welcomed into our hospitals but our main priority now is to keep everyone safe.

“We want to thank everyone for their understanding and cooperation.

“Essential visitors, like birthing partners, parents of children and those visiting a family member receiving end of life care, will continue to be allowed, however only one visitor at any given time.

“If you are in the essential group of visitors, please speak to the nurse in charge to arrange.”

Effective immediately the exemptions include one birthing partner during labour, who must remain within the maternity area at all times.

Parents of children who are in hospital or attending an appointment are also allowed but they should remain with their child at all times.

One person will be allowed into a hospital to support someone with a mental health issue – such as dementia, a learning disability or autism – where not being present would cause the patient distress.

Those receiving end of life care will also be allowed just one family member to visit.

Arrangements will have to be made through the nurse in charge in the ward with all visitors required to use hand sanitiser when entering and leaving clinical areas.

Volunteers will also be on site to encourage social distancing measures.