Face coverings must be worn when attending Healthcare appointments

From Monday, all visitors and patients attending healthcare appointments at St Mary’s Hospital must wear a face covering at all times.

In line with Government guidance, all members of the public needing to visit NHS sites will need to wear face coverings.

Wearing a face covering is one of a number of measures that is being put in place to help keep patients, visitors and staff safe.

Visiting restrictions at St Mary’s Hospital remain in place – people wanting to visit patients should phone the ward area in advance.

Alice Webster, Nursing Director at Isle of Wight NHS Trust, said: “We would like to thank our Island community for their continued support and to reassure them that we are taking every step to ensure that our healthcare facilities are safe for everyone and wearing face coverings to appointments is an additional measure that will help.

“From Monday when patients come to St. Mary’s Hospital they will see all staff wearing face masks, not just those working in clinical areas, and again this is to support the safety of everyone.

“We are also asking people to arrive at the time of their appointment, and not before and to come unaccompanied unless a chaperone is required. These measures will really help us to safely maintain social distancing.”

Evidence suggests face coverings can help reduce the risk of transmission if you are suffering from coronavirus, but not showing symptoms.

A face covering can be anything from a fancy fabric mask, to a quirky homemade creation made from a shirt or a sock to simply a scarf; as long as it covers the nose and mouth and you are able to breathe comfortably.

As the IW NHS Trust continues to try and limit the number of people visiting the hospital you will need to attend your appointment unaccompanied, this includes when attending for a blood test. However, patients are allowed to bring a chaperone with them if the patient is a child or they lack capacity.

Further information for patients and visitors is available at https://www.iow.nhs.uk/Patients-and-Visitors/