Hospital clarifies one visitor per patient rule

File photo dated 16/11/02 of a sign at West Suffolk Hospital In Bury St Edmunds, as a manhunt was un

West Suffolk Hospital, in Bury St Edmunds, is allowing one visitor per inpatient - Credit: PA

West Suffolk Hospital has clarified rules about who can visit inpatients - saying that people can only have a single, named person come to see them throughout their stay.

The Bury St Edmunds hospital announced that people could have one visitor a day for up to an hour.

It has now clarified that the visitor must be the same person throughout the patient's hospital stay and cannot be changed.

This is to help minimise the number of people coming onto the wards and therefore lower the chance of any infection spreading. 

There will be slightly different arrangements for maternity and paediatric areas. Ward staff will continue to have discretion in visiting arrangements for those receiving end of life care or those with specific mental health needs. 

From today, the hospital is also encouraging visitors to take a lateral flow Covid test before visiting.

While this is not compulsory, staff say it is a great way for visitors to protect their loved ones. 

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Lateral flow tests are now widely available for free to the public via a wide range of local collection points or by post.

A map of participating pharmacies can be found on the NHS Test and Trace Site Finder map, available here.