Patients & Visitors

Visiting information

All outpatients and visitors at the RUH are asked to wear a face covering at all times. Face coverings can act as a barrier to prevent the spread of coronavirus from the wearer to others. They can be purchased commercially or handmade. There is information online about how to wear and make a face covering.

Please bring your own face covering and wear it when you first enter the hospital or a department directly. We understand that not all patients will be able to wear a face covering, such as young children or those with breathing difficulties.

Got a question? Please see our FAQ.


Changes to national guidance mean that, where we are able to facilitate visiting in a safe and manageable way, inpatients can have one visitor a day for up to an hour.

To ensure social distancing, visits must be booked with ward teams the day before.

There are different visiting arrangements for:

  • End of life patients
  • Vulnerable adults
  • Maternity
  • Children's Ward
  • NICU
  • Patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19
Please contact the ward in advance to discuss appropriate arrangements.

A&E Department

Please note that patients arriving at our A&E department are asked to come on their own.

We are following social distancing guidelines and, as a result, have less space in our emergency department waiting room.

You can be accompanied by a partner, family member, friend or carer, if:

  • You are a patient with a physical or mental disability, who cannot attend alone
  • You are under the age of 16


During the COVID-19 pandemic we have replaced some face-to face appointments with 'virtual' appointments by phone or video.

It is important that you attend a face-to-face appointment if you are asked. Please be assured that we have measures in place to ensure your safety and that of our staff.

At this time, we are not allowing family or friends to accompany patients to appointments. There are some exceptions for Maternity appointments, find out more.

Patients should attend appointments alone, unless advised otherwise by a clinician. Child outpatients can be accompanied by one adult and no siblings.

Control the virus, save lives

You must not visit in any circumstances if you have a high temperature or new continuous cough or a loss or change in your sense of taste or smell.

Everyone should follow the expert national guidance on social distancing and self-isolation, staying at home wherever possible, to help limit the spread of coronavirus, protect the most vulnerable people in our communities and our NHS.

We recognise this is a difficult time for all our patients, their families and carers. Your health, safety and wellbeing, that of our patients, communities and individuals and teams across the organisation remain our absolute priority.

Thank you for your continued support and understanding at this challenging time.

We're following social distancing at all our sites to help keep you and us safe. When you visit, please keep a 2m distance between you and others wherever possible.

As you move around our sites please:
  • Keep to the left
  • Walk in single file
  • Stand aside to let others pass at a safe distance
  • Follow guidance provided in waiting rooms, stairways, communal areas and lifts
Thank you for your co-operation.

Send a message to your loved one

We can help you to keep in touch by passing on a message to your loved one in hospital. This service is designed to let patients know that their friends and loved ones are well, thinking of them and sending their best wishes.

Step one: Email or call 01225 826984 to tell us what your message is. Please provide the patient's name, date of birth, location or ward if known, and your details including your relationship to the patient.

Step two: Your message will be delivered to the patient using our in-house postal service, Monday to Friday.

Unfortunately we are unable to facilitate sending messages back from patients to their family or friends.

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