Changes to Covid-related restrictions at NHSGGC sites

In recent weeks, the national picture, including Scottish Government guidance for how we live with Covid-19 has changed.

NHSGGC has reviewed the way it operates as guidance has changed
NHSGGC has reviewed the way it operates as guidance has changed

This, coupled with the continued downward trend in hospitalisations, has enabled NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) to review and enact changes to the way in which it operates.

While not in a position to completely remove all Covid-related restrictions from health and social care settings, in the coming weeks the health board will begin to take further steps to return to pre-pandemic ways of working.

NHSGGC has now removed the requirement for physical/social distancing across its sites.

In some cases, where buildings or services cannot make these adjustments, for example if there remains a requirement in a department or clinical service (i.e. residential/care homes), this will be communicated using appropriate signage.

Hospital visiting will be further re-instated at all of sites, adopting person-centred visiting for all patients, with a maximum of two interchangeable visitors at any one time wherever possible.

The only exception to this will be in relation to high risk patients/patient cohorts or on wards with a current, active Covid-outbreak.

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The requirement to wear a facemask or face covering when entering or moving around public or clinical areas of NHSGGC buildings will remain.

The health board will also continue to strongly recommend that when members of the public visit any of its sites that they wear a face covering, unless they are exempt.Commenting on the operational changes, director of Human Resources and Organisational Development, Anne MacPherson, said: “We would like to thank all our staff for their ongoing commitment to their colleagues and patients throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

"We hope that these changes will be a positive step to support our staff in their day to day practice.

"Our staff and patient safety remains a priority, which is why although physical distancing will cease, we will continue to ask staff to wear appropriate face coverings while at work.

“Our primary aim is to make sure that all of our staff are well supported during this time of transition and I am pleased that we have also been able to take steps towards enabling more of our staff to work flexibly through our Blended Working Guidance.”

NHSGGC deputy Nurse Director, Jennifer Rodgers, added: “The decision to move to a person centred visiting approach wherever possible across all of our hospitals has been taken due to the decline in Covid positive patients being treated across NHSGGC.

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"Visits from friends and family are an essential part of the recovery process, so being able to allow greater flexibility for visits will be welcomed by staff and patients alike.

“It is really important to remember that we are still living with Covid in our local communities, which is why we are asking that all visitors continue to wear a face covering when visiting their loved ones in hospital and if you do have Covid symptoms, please rearrange your visit.

"Our staff and patients are looking forward to welcoming more visitors to our hospitals.”