Most inpatients can receive visitors while they’re in hospital. Keeping in touch with loved ones and friends is important and, for most, the easiest and best way to do this will continue to be via:

  • A patient’s own devices, such as phones and i-Pads
  • Our Virtual Visiting service – talk to the ward for details
  • Messages to Loved ones – via PALS

Find out more.

Booking visits

Please book your visit by calling the appropriate ward or our Switchboard on 01603 286 286 between 10am and midday.

For safety, we encourage only essential visits and patients in non-Covid inpatient wards can have one visitor a day, for one hour. Booking is required, at least 24 hours before you wish to visit.

If a visitor is frail or needs support to enable them to visit, please discuss this when booking and we will help as much as we can.

To protect patients, the public and staff from possible transmission of the virus, we’re unable to facilitate patients meeting groups of their family and friends outside.

See more about what to expect when you visit.

Exceptions to restricted visiting include:

  • Patients receiving end-of-life care or where there is significant deterioration
  • Patients with a mental health issue such as dementia, a learning disability or autism
  • Parents with babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)
  • Parents or appropriate adults visiting their child
  • Birth partners for women in labour and on ante and post-natal wards

Non-Covid wards

Visiting must be booked in advance via the ward (please call between 10am and midday), with one named visitor per patient, visiting a maximum of once a day (preferably the same person each time).

For Test and Trace purposes, all wards hold booking sheets containing the patient’s and visitor’s name, contact details and visiting slot, which is held for 21 days.

There are three visiting sessions per day (10am-midday, 2-4pm and 6-8pm), with one-hour time slots.

As the total number of visitors on a ward is restricted to allow social distancing, we regret that it may not be possible for every patient to have a visitor every day. No children are allowed in adult areas.

Covid wards

No visiting is permitted on wards with Covid patients except in exceptional circumstances, agreed by ward staff, such as patients receiving end-of-life care, where there is significant deterioration or for patients with a mental health issue such as dementia, a learning disability or autism.

Elective surgery

No visiting is permitted unless there are special circumstances, when it can be arranged with ward staff.

Maternity services

  • Antenatal and postnatal: Birth partners who do not have symptoms of Covid-19 can visit from 2-6 pm.
  • During labour, birth and in the immediate postnatal period, one birth partner (with no Covid-19 symptoms) can be present in either the Delivery Suite or the Midwifery-Led Birthing Unit. If a general anaesthetic is required, they will be asked to leave the theatre, as in pre Covid-19 practice.
  • Birth partners are offered a Covid-19 swab either on admission or pre-admission for a caesarean section or induction of labour.
  • Partners of people giving birth will be able to attend dating scans (11 weeks); anomaly scans (20 weeks); Rainbow scans and Fetal Medicine Unit scans.

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU)

Two parents can visit for three hours a day, with a limit of two sets of parents per room.

Critical Care Complex

Visits can be booked between 9 and 11am, 24 hours in advance, with a maximum of five visitors in four time slots (please check at the time of booking). If the patient is ventilated, the named visitor will be the patient’s nominated next of kin.

Emergency Department and assessment areas

Due to the current need to maintain social distancing, we’re not able to accommodate visitors/companions/family members in the Emergency Department. Consideration will be given to anyone visiting end-of-life patients or individuals providing support for patients with communication needs or where leaving may have a significant detrimental effect on their psychological wellbeing. Please speak to a nurse if you feel you fall into this category and would like further information.

One parent/carer is permitted in Children’s ED at all times

Children’s wards

  • One parent/carer can be resident on the ward
  • One parent or carer only is permitted in Children’s ED at all times unless in exceptional circumstances, agreed at the time by the clinical team
  • Coltishall Children’s Assessment Unit: Two parents/carers can accompany their child providing they wear face coverings.

Outpatients appointments

See more details about what to expect when you visit for an outpatients appointment.

More information

You may find these sites helpful in understanding hospital visits:


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