TEMPORARY restrictions at the Hospital remain in place – but officers are ‘working to resume normal visiting’, the Health Minister has said.
Deputy Richard Renouf explained that the situation was being ‘reviewed regularly’ after States Members passed a proposal lodged by Deputy Montfort Tadier calling for visits to be reinstated safely and a ‘robust system’ – to keep people who have Covid-19 from visiting people in hospital – implemented.
The current restrictions, which were introduced last week, closed all adult wards in the Hospital – and mental-health wards in St Saviour – to the majority of visitors.
In a statement, Deputy Renouf said: ‘Temporary visiting restrictions to adult wards at the General Hospital and on mental-health wards remain in place following a decision last week by the Council of Ministers, which was made following advice from senior clinical colleagues, who reported that several inpatients in the Hospital tested positive for Covid-19 after a small number of visitors came in with symptoms.
‘The decision has been taken to support the effective running of the Hospital and the need to protect the staff and services provided across the General Hospital and mental health. Meanwhile, officers are working with the minister to examine options for a safe and robust system to permit visiting. The situation is being regularly reviewed and all involved are working to resume normal visiting as soon as it is safe to do so.’
He added: ‘The key consideration continues to be keeping the environment safe within the Hospital, where work is ongoing to manage the effects of transmission of Covid into the inpatient bed base. Health and Community Services must continue to do all they can to protect Hospital patients. It is understood that it is difficult for loved ones not to be able to visit a patient in Hospital.’
Provisions are currently in place for visitors to those receiving end-of-life care, the maternity ward and the Special Care Baby Unit. Entry may be possible under other exceptional circumstances as well. Adult patients attending the Emergency Department still need to come in alone, and children can have one adult with them. Anyone who is due to go to the Hospital for an outpatient appointment, or to pick up a prescription from the Hospital pharmacy, is asked not to attend if they have any Covid symptoms.