COVID19 - important information
15 June 2020

COVID-19 - important information

Our focus is on ensuring we continue to deliver care to the people who need us.

We thank all our patients for their understanding at this time and every single member of SCFT staff who is going above and beyond in these challenging times.

While we anticipate that how we deliver some services might need to change over the coming weeks as we, like the rest of the country, respond to COVID-19 and play our part in ensuring that we do all we can to reduce the risk of spreading the illness, we want to reassure all our patients, their families and carers, that our priority and commitment will always be to ensuring we are there for the people who need us most.

Visitor guidance

Restricted visiting is being allowed at SCFT, effective Monday 15 June 2020. 

Visiting hours are between 9am and 5pm, seven days a week, although there may be a case for more flexibility with individual cases if family/close friends have work or childcare commitments during the day. 

The number of visitors per patient, per day, is limited to one close family member (or somebody important to the patient) for a maximum of one hour. In exceptional circumstances a second visitor may be considered but please contact the ward directly to discuss this before attending. 

All visitors will be asked a set of questions when they arrive at the ward to determine whether they might be ill with any of the symptoms of coronavirus. The questions have been introduced for the safety and wellbeing of all patients and staff. 

We are asking all visitors to bring their own face coverings when they visit but visitors will also be given additional, appropriate, personal protective equipment to wear whilst on the ward, such as an apron and gloves. We are also requesting all visitors to respect social distancing guidelines and remain two metres away from the person they are visiting throughout the visit. 

When visitors leave, they should discard their personal protective equipment into the bin provided and wash their hands or use alcohol gel.

Face coverings

From 15 June, we are encouraging everyone coming for an appointment or visiting our sites to wear a face covering that covers your nose and mouth. We also expect patients and visitors to maintain social distancing and regularly wash their hands or use hand sanitiser.

We know that for a few people, wearing a face covering might be difficult. This includes people with breathing problems, learning difficulties or a condition that would make wearing a face covering distressing. If there is a reason that you feel unable to wear a face covering, please do speak to a member of staff when you arrive at one of our sites.

We are asking people to bring and wear their own face coverings. If you do not have one, or you have forgotten yours, a member of staff can give you one.

Children under the age of 11 do not need to wear a face covering.

Thank you for your understanding.

Supporting patients to stay in touch

We know this is a worrying time for relatives of patients so we are doing all we can to help you keep in touch with your loved ones.

iPads are now available on all of our wards so that patients and families can stay in touch with a video call. You can prebook a time to speak to your loved one through our Patient Experience team by emailing sc-tr.messagestopatients@nhs.net or by calling them on 01273 242292.  The team will arrange for a designated member of the ward staff to contact you to arrange the date and time of the call and to be there to help your loved one with the technology and set the call up if needed. Please be assured that we are adhering to Infection Control guidance and making sure the iPads are cleaned before each use.

The Patient Experience team is also running a new personal messaging service that will enable friends and families to send messages, photos, grandchildren’s drawings etc by email so that we can arrange for them to be printed off and handed to our patients.  Please email sc-tr.messagestopatients@nhs.net or call 01273 242292 for further details.

When contacting us, please tell us the patients name, the hospital and ward they are staying on and a contact telephone number for you.

New NHS Diabetes Advice helpline 

NHS England and NHS Improvement have launched a new helpline in response to disruption to normal diabetes services due to the COVID-19 pandemic and response. 

The service is for adults living with diabetes who use insulin to manage their condition and require immediate clinical advice. 

Whether you or a member of your household have caught the virus, or routine care has been disrupted, the helpline is available for immediate clinical advice to help you understand how to effectively manage your diabetes. 

You can access NHS Diabetes Advice via Diabetes UK’s support line on 0345 123 2399, Monday-Friday, 9am-6pm.

Additional information

Please head to the link below to read a message to all from the Sussex Health and Care System Leaders:

COVID-19: message from Sussex Health and Care System Leaders