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HOSPITAL RESTRICTIONS: Gateshead Hospital restrict visits amid soaring COVID cases

HOSPITAL RESTRICTIONS: Gateshead Hospital restrict visits amid soaring COVID cases


Visitor restrictions at hospitals - visiting at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead is being restricted in a bid to protect staff and patients from coronavirus.

To help protect staff, patients and the local community from the spread of Covid-19, visiting restrictions have been introduced in the hospital from Tuesday 4 January.

Visiting at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Gateshead is being temporarily stopped from Tuesday 4 January 2022 due to the spread of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 in the local community.

Various restrictions are in place at hospitals across the North East, as well as nationally across England.

Nicola Bruce, Director of Operations at QE Gateshead, said: “The Omicron variant of Covid-19 is now spreading rapidly in the local community and whilst we have been trying to maintain some visiting because we realise how important this is to patients and relatives, unfortunately, the increase in cases does now pose a greater risk of our patients acquiring the virus.

“A proportion of people with Omicron appear to have no symptoms and regrettably, as a result, we have seen some transmission in our hospitals which has been linked to visiting.

“We have to put the protection of our patients, some of whom are vulnerable or immuno-compromised, as our first priority and so we have taken the difficult decision to temporarily stop all visiting unless there are exceptional circumstances.

“We will continue to monitor the situation with a view to reinstating visiting as soon as we can do so safely.”

Visiting is now limited to:

  • Patients who are receiving end-of-life care
  • Parents or legal guardians of children
  • Mental health patients

There are still lots of ways to keep in touch with people staying in hospital, including electronic ‘virtual visiting’, bedside telephone calls, or by sending messages to loved ones (ghnt.messagetoalovedone@nhs.net / 0191 445 6047 or 0191 445 6129 between 10am and 12pm, Monday to Friday).

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