Note to visitors - Coronavirus (COVID-19)

As part of our continued actions to protect the community regarding COVID-19 and keep the hospital running, we would respectfully request you to consider the changes we have made to members of the public visiting patients in the Trust

Update from Monday 5th October: 

We are delighted to be able to be in a position to open up further visiting within Maternity. The two changes we are able to make are:

Opening up the early scan (undertaken at approximately 12 weeks gestation and also referred to as the dating or screening scan) for someone else to come along. This will mean that for both routine scans, someone can attend alongside expectant Mums.

Allowing a birth partner to join expectant Mums when they attend for assessment because they are possibly in labour. Previously birth partners did not come along until labour was confirmed.

This is reflective of ongoing risk assessments within the Maternity setting.

This does not include inductions at this moment in time but this will be reviewed, as the framework suggests, in a stepwise approach with a plan to looking at this in the next few weeks.

COVID-19 visitors note: 

  • One nominated individual per patient will be allocated a 2-hour time slot to see women who have given birth in our postnatal ward
  • Visits to all adult inpatient wards at Derriford Hospital are suspended with the exception of visiting for patients at the end of life and for parents and carers in women’s and children’s areas
  • Single birthing partner will be able to stay during your time on central delivery suite. 
  • A nominated individual is now able to attend the early scan (undertaken at approximately 12 weeks gestation and also referred to as the dating or screening scan)
  • A nominated individual is now able to attend the anomaly scan (18-20 weeks gestation) with expectant mothers. This will mean that for both routine scans, someone can attend alongside expectant Mums.
  • In paediatrics and on our neonatal unit, both parents/guardians will be permitted to visit their child together.

For details about each change (and exceptions) can be found here.

All scans are now being undertaken on the UHP site. It is intended that once sonography establishment increases, UHP will resume growth scan schedules in accordance with Saving Babies Lives. In order to continue to keep footfall to a minimum and to allow for social distancing in the waiting areas, women are still being asked to attend for scans and clinic appointments alone (with the exception of the 20 week anomaly scan).

Visitors' Charter for Adult Inpatients

Our #letsbeopen campaign logo As part of our #letsbeopen campaign from Monday 1 August 2016, all of our adult inpatient wards, with the exception of critical care and maternity, extended their opening hours to between the hours of 07:30 and 22:00. 

We also launched our Visitors' Charter for Adult Inpatients on the same day. 

The Visitors’ Charter outlines what we will do as staff and what we ask our visitors to do too. It includes standards that we ask all of our visitors to respect, such as ensuring that no more than two people visit at any one time, supporting and encouraging the patient during mealtimes, observing quiet times or being asked to leave for a short period of time, such as during doctors’ rounds, etc.

This initiative has multiple benefits, including enhanced recovery, a reduction of anxiety for both the patient and their relative and many more and was influenced by the John’s Campaign, which aims to give the carers of those living with dementia the right to stay with them in hospital.

Please click here to download our Visitors' Charter.

We recognise the invaluable role and contribution that families and carers can provide to their loved ones whilst they are in hospital. Visits not only help patient wellbeing but they also play a vital part in recovery. Our priority is providing quality care for our patients but we want to be as flexible as possible to ensure you can spend time with your loved ones and, if you wish, be more involved in their care. Our visiting times for adult inpatient areas* are between 07:30 and 22:00.

Our Visitors' Charter for Adult Inpatients




We will:


We ask that you will:

  • Be polite and courteous at all times.
  • Help and support you if you want to be involved in your loved one’s care, including supporting you to assist at mealtimes or with washing.
  • Politely ask you to leave if there are more than two visitors at the bedside.
  • Let you know when it is the doctors’ rounds as it may be necessary for us to ask you to leave for a short period to ensure confidentiality for all patients is maintained. We may also ask you to leave for a short time during care or treatment to your relative or another patient in their bay. 
  • Create a calm and restful environment to help our patients’ recovery.
  • Follow our Carers Policy, which details how we will support carers.
  • Use our skills to prioritise the planning of care to our patients and communicate our decisions.
  • Keep you informed, with the patient’s permission. If agreed by the patient, we will arrange for you to speak to a member of the medical team.
  • We will wash our hands and protect our patients from infection. Please note, on occasion this might mean that we need to restrict visiting times or to move patients to an allocated side room.
  • Work hard to provide a clean hospital.


  • Be polite and courteous to our staff, other patients and visitors.
  • Let a member of staff know if you would like to assist with providing any care (with the patient’s permission) and inform staff of any specific needs the patient has. If appropriate, please support and encourage your relative to eat and drink as this is important for their recovery.
  • Help your relative by bringing in their medication, toiletries, dentures, glasses and suitable clothing and footwear.
  • Ensure that no more than two people visit a patient bedside at any one time and please use the chairs provided. Discuss with the Ward Manager if you wish to bring children in to visit.
  • Understand if you are asked to leave the ward for a short period so care or treatment can be provided to your loved one or during the doctors’ rounds. This is to ensure confidentiality for all patients is maintained.
  • Please avoid disturbing the nursing staff when they are administering medications.
  • Please be respectful. Our patients are ill and need to rest, so keep noise to a minimum and switch your phone to silent.
  • Remember that rest is important; please allow your relative the opportunity to rest for periods throughout the day. Please be respectful of other patients’ rest times too.
  • Arrange for one family member to act as liaison between the ward staff, family and friends. Please understand and respect that information cannot be given out unless the patient has given their permission.
  • Please wash your hands on entering and leaving the ward by using the alcohol gel provided and use the public facilities available rather than those for our patients.
  • Please do not visit if you are unwell yourself and please do not visit for at least 48 hours after your last episode of diarrhoea and vomiting.
  • Understand and respect the decision to restrict visiting or to move your relative into an allocated side room.
  • Assist your relative to keep their bed space tidy to enable our staff to be able to clean effectively.

Was this page helpful?

Was this page helpful?

Please answer the question below, this helps us to reduce the number of spam emails that we receive so that we can spend more time responding to genuine enquiries and feedback. Thank you.