Ward visiting times at the RD&E will change to 10.30am-8pm from 1 April, 2019, following a year-long pilot to test out more ‘open’ and flexible public visiting times.
For several years, public visiting at the RD&E was limited to afternoons and evenings, but in February 2018 the Trust began piloting 8am-8pm visiting, in line with many other local and national Trusts.
Since then we’ve been gathering and listening to feedback on the changes from public and staff. The feedback has shown some real positives from the change, such as relatives assisting in care, easier parking, fewer phone calls, less ‘mass’ visiting at peak times and better discharge planning.
It has also revealed some challenges, including potential interruptions to key ward tasks commonly carried out between 8am-10am such as board rounds, drug rounds and essential cleaning. Patients also reported that they felt the morning was too hectic when lots of visitors are present.
The Trust has now reviewed all this feedback in detail and as a result, we’ve decided that from 1 April, visiting will start at 10.30am and finish as before at 8pm.
It’s hoped this slightly later start time will mean patients will have more time to get up, dressed and ready before visitors arrive, speeding up their recovery and discharge home, and staff will be able to complete key tasks more safely.
Prof Em Wilkinson-Brice, Deputy Chief Executive/Chief Nurse: “We’ve learned a huge amount from piloting this new approach to visiting times over the past year. While it’s revealed some challenges around ensuring that key early morning safety and housekeeping tasks are carried out safely, it’s clear that more ‘open’ and flexible visiting times bring a range of positive benefits for patients, their loved ones and staff.
“Now that we’ve listened, tested and adapted, we’re confident this is a good way forward but we will continue to monitor feedback and consider any further changes in future if needed, to ensure we maintain high quality, safe services.”