Eastern services visiting details

Visitors and patients are not routinely required to wear face coverings unless it is their personal preference.

To help keep our most vulnerable patients safe and to help protect our visitors, there are some exceptions to this, which are as follows:

  • In settings (inpatient or outpatient) where patients are at high risk of infection due to immunosuppression, e.g. oncology/haematology and renal services, visitors will be asked to wear a facemask
  • Visitors will be asked to wear a surgical facemask if visiting a high-risk area or a patient with suspected/known COVID-19
  • Individuals accompanying patients to ED and admission areas will continue to be encouraged to wear face coverings

Please help us to help you and your loved one by not attending if you are showing any symptoms of COVID-19 or flu or any other infection (such as diarrhoea and vomiting).

Every adult in-patient should only have one visitor at a time. You do not need to make an appointment for this visit.

We ask that wherever possible, these visits are as short as possible, though visitors who are helping to support the care of their relative or friend are welcome to stay for longer periods of time. We appreciate that there will be some exceptional circumstances, and these will be considered at the discretion of the nurse in charge.

If attending our emergency department (ED), you should only be accompanied by one person, and we strongly encourage you to wear a facemask or covering (unless medically exempt) when you are in our ED waiting room.

Other visiting is as follows:

  • Maternity:
    • on the labour ward, two birth partners can be with the woman/birthing person, 24/7
    • for inpatients on the ante/postnatal ward, one person can visit 9am-8pm and two people can visit between 3pm-8pm plus siblings
    • for outpatients, one adult can visit for the duration of the appointment
    • for community hospital settings, one adult and siblings can visit

  • Children inpatients: parents may visit 24/7 and they may have two additional visitors at a bedside between 12pm-7.30pm plus siblings.

  • Neonatal unit (NNU): may have both parents and siblings 24/7. Visiting available for anyone other than parent, siblings or support person between 2pm-8pm. Maximum two people at cot side any one time (excluding siblings).

  • Outpatients and day treatment units: Patients may be accompanied by two people where appropriate and necessary to assist their communication and/or to meet their health, care, emotional, religious, or spiritual care needs.

Staying in touch in other ways

Our Family Liaison Service can:

  • relay personal messages to and from patients who are staying on wards.
  • arrange virtual visiting with a video call to family.
  • receive essential items for patients.

Personal messages

Email your message and/or a photo to: rduh.pals-eastern@nhs.net with the patient name and ward. Alternatively, call: 01392 402093 and leave the message you’d like shared with your love one.

Virtual visits

If your loved one does not have a smartphone, it is sometimes possible for us to arrange a virtual visit. To see if you can use this service, please contact the team 10:00 – 16:00, Monday to Friday, on:

  • Wonford: 01392 402093 / or email rduh.pals-eastern@nhs.net
  • Exmouth: 01395 279684
  • Sidmouth: 01395 512482
  • Tiverton: 01884 235400

Receive essential items

All essential items should be bought in an easy to wipe clean bag which is clearly labelled with the patients name and ward.

For Wonford, the drop off point is situated in the PALS office in the Main Entrance and is available Monday to Friday: 9.30am to 4pm.

For the community hospitals, please contact the relevant hospital prior to dropping off any patient property - see the 'Our sites' page for contact details.


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Last updated: January 18, 2023