Visitors have been temporarily banned from the hospital after a small number came in with covid-19 symptoms and passed the virus on to several patients, while some verbally abused staff and refused to comply with safety measures.
From tomorrow (Thursday 13 January) and for at least a week, all visitors will be banned from the Hospital Adult Wards and Mental Health Wards, except for people receiving end of life care, patients in the Maternity and Special Care Baby Unit and in other special circumstances.
Anyone who feels they have special circumstances can call the ward their loved one is on and speak to the ward manager.
Adult patients attending the Emergency Department will need to do so alone, and children will only be able to have one adult attending with them.
Visitors had previously been limited to two per patients as cases topped 2,000 in late December.
Pictured: Several inpatients in hospital have tested positive for covid-19 after a very small number of visitors came in with symptoms.
The decision to restrict visitors was taken by the Council of Ministers after senior clinical colleagues in Health and Community Services reported that several inpatients in the hospital had tested positive for covid-19 after a very small number of visitors came in with symptoms.
Restricting visitors aims to support the continued effective running of the hospital as the number of cases of covid-19 in the community remains high. According to the latest figures, there are currently 3,826 with covid in the island.
“The hospital has been delivering excellent care with minimal disruption," the Minister for Health and Social Services, Deputy Richard Renouf said. "We need to ensure this effective running can continue. I and my colleagues on the Council of Ministers condemn the conduct of people who endanger the safety of hospital patients and staff.
“We recognise the benefits to health and wellbeing that come from receiving visitors during hospital treatment and we deeply regret the need to announce further restrictions. We will seek to reinstate normal visiting arrangements as soon as it is safe to do so.
“I am sorry that this happened, and that a small number of people have continued to visit when unwell as this has led to this regrettable step being taken."
Pictured: The Government said staff been subjected to verbal abuse by a small number of visitors who have not complied with safety measures.
A press release from the Government said that hospital staff have worked hard to maintain strict infection control but have, in some cases, been subjected to verbal abuse by a small number of visitors who have not complied with the measures put in place to protect patients, and staff, which the Minister condemned.
“I am also angry to hear that clinical staff have been abused in this way; they come to work to care for islanders and I am really proud of all that they do," he said. "We need to do all we can to make sure they are supported."
Jersey's Chief Nurse, Rose Naylor, added: “We are a small hospital and on an island. As such, we take infection prevention and control incredibly seriously in all of our services. Our priority is to our patients, to ensure their safety while they are in our care, and to the health and wellbeing of our staff.
“Our staff are amazing and have continued throughout the course of the pandemic to deliver care to islanders in very difficult conditions, all of which while they are wearing PPE, are doing all they can to protect patients and are regularly tested themselves for covid.
“We absolutely appreciate the benefits that seeing a loved one brings to people’s recovery and as such restricting visiting, even temporarily is not something we do lightly.
"Please be assured our clinical staff will be able to make exemptions to this in exceptional circumstances, as we have done previously.”
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