Essential visits only reintroduced at Scottish hospital as Covid cases rise

Only essential visits have been reintroduced at a Scottish hospital due to rising coronavirus cases.

Patients at Wishaw University Hospital will not be allowed to visit and exceptions will only be made for patients who would be in serious pain from not seeing a family member.

There are no changes to visits to mental health and maternity services.

Monklands University Hospital and Hairmyres University Hospital will continue to offer one visit per day, from one person, but this will be monitored and reviewed daily.

NHS Lanarkshire bosses say the decision was not taken lightly but was taken to limit the number of people entering hospital as the experience increased Covid-19 pressure.

NHS Lanarkshire NMAHP Executive Director Eddie Docherty said: “We understand that hospital patients are going through a difficult time and want to have family and friends around to support them.

“Unfortunately, our priority is to protect our patients and staff as much as possible and that is why we have made the difficult decision to limit visits at this time.

“However, this is reviewed daily and as soon as it is safe to do so we will expand visits, prioritizing access to those closest to the patient.

“We recognize that essential visits, which only visit patients where not seeing a family member would cause particular distress or suffering, are not ideal but necessary at this time.

“Anyone with questions about the visiting arrangements should contact the nurse in charge of the service.

“We also strongly encourage all essential visitors to take a lateral flow test before visiting their loved one. Information on how to get a lateral flow test and how to take the test is available by visiting NHS Inform.

“We hope everyone will understand that this decision was made in the best interests of patients, other visitors and our staff.”

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