A hospital in Slough has stopped allowing visitors to prevent Covid-19 spreading among staff and patients.

The changes, which came into force on January 1, impact Wexham Park Hospital and Frimley Park Hospital

Families can visit for any patient who is deemed to be nearing the end of their life, according to Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust.

Deputy director of nursing Maxine McVey said: “We understand how important visits from loved ones are for our patients, which is why this decision is not one that we have taken lightly, but our priority has to be to ensuring the safety of those in our care and those looking after them.

“Our nursing teams will update each patient’s next of kin regularly, so that they can keep the rest of their family and friends up to date.

“They will work with families where there are exceptional circumstances, including for example, where patients have dementia or learning disabilites.

Next of kin will be contacted regularly with updates on their loved ones in the hospital’s care.

Read more: Covid infections in Slough worse than they've ever been

The highest number of cases ever recorded in 24 hours in slough were detected on September 29 (409).

There are exceptions to these changes to visiting in some areas as follows:

Patients in Emergency Department Only

  • One relative can accompany a patient into majors or resus.
  • No-one can accompany a patient in minor injuries, ambulatory care or the assessment area. Exceptions can be made on a case by case basis at the nurses discretion, where the patient requires a carer to accompany them.
  • Where the patient is a child, one parent is allowed. Siblings are not allowed to attend.

Children’s Wards

  • One well parent/carer can be resident with their child. Another parent/carer can swap as needed.
  • No other family members are allowed. In certain circumstances, at the discretion of the nurse in charge this can be reviewed (e.g., delivery of bad news).
  • Visiting on the neonatal wards is also restricted to two well parents/carers.
  • No other family members are allowed except in circumstances that are agreed with the nurse in charge such as end of life care.
  • One well and covid negative parent can attend with their child at any time in

Read more: The three places Slough's covid vaccination bus will be this week

Paediatric Outpatients and Ambulatory Care Units

  • Parents can change over at any time of day
  • Siblings are not allowed to attend except in circumstances that are agreed with the nurse in charge (such as no other adult to care for siblings while appointment is attended, or a breastfeeding infant)
  • Where a covid positive child is admitted and their primary carers are also covid positive but well, and alternative primary care cannot be given to the child, the parent/carer will be allowed to be present but must remain in the isolation room at all times
  • Food and drinks will be provided by the Trust
  • Where the primary carer is unwell, alternative arrangements to accompany the child must be made as the children’s ward staff are unable to provide clinical care to the parent/carer.

Maternity One

  • Well birthing partner can accompany a woman in labour
  • The nominated birth partner can accompany patient to the antenatal ward, while in labour and the same birthing partner for the postnatal ward
  • Birth partners need to provide evidence of a negative lateral flow every 24 hours to continue access
  • Face masks/covering needs to be worn and social distancing from staff and other patients or visitors needs to be adhered to