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Visitors required to take a lateral flow test before visiting loved ones in hospital at NGH and KGH

South Entrance

Updated 21 December 2021: From Wednesday 22 December Northampton General Hospital will be introducing additional testing requirements for our children’s wards Disney and Paddington. Please see details of this below.

From 14th December anyone planning to visit a loved one at Northampton or Kettering General Hospitals, will need to provide proof of a negative lateral flow test before they will be allowed onto the ward.

All visitors to adult inpatient wards will be required to show evidence of their negative lateral flow test result before they will able to enter the ward. They will need to be able to show the evidence of a negative result via the Government issued text message, email, or if this is not possible they can bring the test in a plastic bag.

Sheran Oke, Director of Nursing, Midwifery, Patient Services and Infection Prevention at NGH explains why the new guidance has been implemented: “With the spread of the new Omicron variant, we all have a responsibility to make sure that we don’t spread COVID-19 to other people, especially those who are at a higher risk.

“To help to keep our patients as safe as possible from COVID-19 we will be introducing the lateral flow tests for anyone visiting a loved one in hospital with us. This will mean that we can make sure visitors’ loved ones are safe and also protect our other patients and our colleagues. By supporting us with these tests people are helping us to make sure our patients get to spend precious time with their loved ones in a safe way.

“At this time of year there are a lot of winter bugs so we would also remind anyone planning to visit not to come to the hospital if they have any symptoms of COVID-19, colds, coughs, sore throats, diarrhoea or vomiting”.

Visiting guidance for adult inpatient wards:

  • Only one visitor may visit the patient each day for 45 minutes
  • All visitors must clean their hands and wear a hospital face mask
  • Visits must be pre-booked the day before by phoning the ward ideally between 09.30-11.30
  • Visitors must show proof of a negative lateral flow test from that day before they will be allowed entry to the ward
  • The visitor must be in the same household or support bubble as the patient
  • Visiting for maternity, paediatrics, end of life, A&E and outpatients remains the same at the current time
  • Children cannot visit unless there are special circumstances

Visiting guidance for Disney and Paddington wards:

  • One nominated parent or guardian is permitted per patient during their stay. This person will need to have regular COVID-19 PCR tests which will be provided by the ward. Parents can swap over once and the other parent must have a negative PCR test before they can swap.
  • Each patient can have ONE second nominated visitor for two hours per day between 14.00-20.00. This person must be an adult and visiting must be booked in advance by phoning the ward. We will be asking every second visitor to provide evidence of a negative lateral flow test from that day before they can enter the ward.
  • All visitors must clean their hands and wear a hospital face mask
  • We cannot allow any children, including siblings, to visit the wards
  • Only patients with negative COVID-19 PCR tests may receive visitors, this may take 24 hours to process.
  • Anyone with a positive COVID-19 test or anyone showing symptoms of COVID-19 will not be able to visit.

Fiona Barnes, Director of Nursing at Kettering General Hospital said: “Patients in our hospitals are more vulnerable to infections, therefore we all need to play our part and make sure we are doing all we can to protect them from COVID-19.

“We know that lateral flow testing does work and it helps us to identify anyone who may have COVID without knowing it. Nationally around 1 in 3 people with COVID-19 don’t have any symptoms but are still infectious and can easily pass the virus on to others. By asking visitors to do lateral flow tests we can we protect their loved ones, other vulnerable patients around them and the colleagues we have caring for them.

“We hope that our visitors will support our ward teams with this request and treat them with kindness and compassion”.

Lateral flow tests are available for free locally to both hospital sites. Locations of how to collect a test near the hospital or your home address are available here. They can be collected in person or can be ordered to a home address from the Government website.

Posted on Friday 10th December 2021
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