"Just help and information"

I have a family member who is in the hospital and since the norovirus outbreak I have not been allowed to visit. I do understand how serious this is but this is extreme when this has been going on for 11 days.

When I have tried to contact the ward I have to keep asking as nobody seems to pick up the telephone, when I do get through the answer is just fine! I have asked to speak to a dr as to what is going on and I am constantly told to ring back because they are doing their rounds?

So all in all I think it's a very bad show?

Is this the way to treat patients or family members that just want to get their loved ones home or at least to be able to visit them? And please do not tell me to contact PALS because I want contact with a dr

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Responses

Response from Princess Royal University Hospital

Thank you for your feedback and I am sorry to learn of the difficulties you are currently experiencing. We have a number of inpatients at the Princess Royal University Hospital (PRUH) with Norovirus, and we know there are cases in the local community, which have affected schools and residential care homes. As a result, all wards at the PRUH remain closed to visitors.

We appreciate this is a very difficult time for relatives but the wellbeing of our patients is paramount. Norovirus is highly contagious and we have taken this measure to contain the virus and prevent it spreading to other patients. Mobile phones are permitted on the wards so patients can stay in touch with their families. In exceptional circumstances, such as if a patient is extremely unwell, we will allow visiting but this has to be agreed in advance via telephone with senior ward staff.

I am sorry that you have found it difficult to get through to the ward, but given the need to communicate to relatives via telephone about the condition of patients, the telephones are extremely busy at present.

We are reviewing the situation twice daily, but will only re-open to visitors when there is no longer a risk of the virus spreading. We are working closely with external agencies, including Public Health England, to manage the situation. In line with established Trust protocols, we are carrying out additional deep cleans of affected wards on a regular basis; being extra vigilant with hand-washing; wearing protective clothing for every contact with an affected or exposed patient; and rapid testing for any suspected new cases of Norovirus.

As soon as a decision is taken to reopen to visitors we will use these channels to inform the public.

I note from your message that you do not want to contact PALS; however as a liaison service we would be able to identify the correct doctor and put you in contact with their clinical team. Please do consider contacting PALS on kch-tr.palskent@nhs.net or 01689 863252.