Home > Contact us > Information regarding Coronavirus

St Oswald’s Hospice response to Coronavirus

St Oswald’s Hospice

Response to Coronavirus - Updated 02.09.2020

We are constantly monitoring the developing Coronavirus situation. We’d like to reassure you that we are following guidance based on the latest information from the World Health Organization (WHO), Public Health England and Newcastle Hospitals.

Protecting our patients, our staff and volunteers is our number one priority.

If you are planning to visit the Hospice please note the below information prior to your visit:

COVID-19 Response appeal

We need your support. Donating via our COVID-19 response appeal will mean our staff and volunteers will be able to continue providing expert, outstanding care to those patients and families who need it.

As always, thank you for your incredible support.

Donate to our appeal

Advice for everyone:

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement on Monday 23rd March and his update on Sunday 10th May 2020 and based on the NHS England Visitor Guidance, we have made changes to the way people can visit patients on our inpatient ward.

We respectfully ask that all visitors follow the guidelines outlined below at all times. These guidelines have been put in place to protect all patients, visitors and staff working onsite ,and we are very grateful for your cooperation during this difficult time.

The information below will be constantly reviewed, taking in to account national guidance and the welfare of patients, visitors, staff and volunteers.

Please visit this page regularly for updates to restrictions before your visit to the Hospice.

Any questions about any of the below, please contact the Adult Inpatient Unit on 0191 2850063 ext 2004.

Limited visiting with restrictions is now possible for ALL patients
It is important that all visitors call us on the number above, prior to their visit. This is to help us manage who would like to come onsite and when, as well as talk you through the restrictions in place so you know what to expect on arrival and during your visit.

Sadly, if you do not contact us in advance of your visit, during this time it is likely that we will not be able to admit you on to the ward to see your loved one. Please help us all to avoid this situation where we can. Thank you.

During your visit
On Arrival and before you enter the ward, all visitors will be asked ‘screening’ questions by staff to help us carry out your visit as smoothly as possible and help protect everyone onsite.

We will ask you:
• to follow social distancing guidelines at all times.
• wear PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) as directed by staff.

On entering the ward, we will ask all visitors to:
• remain in the patient’s room unless otherwise directed by a staff member.
• not mix with other patients and their visitors during your time onsite.

All of the measures above will help stop the spread of infection.

When you are visiting the Hospice please also remember:
• Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time ideally using soap and water, before entering the ward and before leaving the premises. Alcohol gel is also available if you cannot access soap and water.
• Visitors should not be sitting on patient beds at any time or stay in ward corridors or communal areas unless you’re asked to by a member staff.

When you must not visit the Unit
Please note this guidance applies to all visitors to the ward.

You must not visit the unit if you:
• Are unwell, especially if you have a high temperature or a new, persistent cough, or loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.
• Have been identified as being in the highly vulnerable group and have been advised to shield for 12 weeks. We would discourage you from visiting for your own safety.

If you are unable to visit
We are aware of the distress this could cause and fully support patients in having regular communication with their families and friends. If you are unable to visit, we now have some electronic devices that can be used by patients to have video contact with their loved ones if they would like. We will also arrange for members of the clinical team to have regular contact with a nominated family member / next of kin with the patient’s permission.

New admissions
Our team will discuss visiting with you directly on admission to St Oswald's.

Thank you for your cooperation
We respectfully ask visitors to please not challenge our staff, who are doing their utmost to protect us all at this unprecedented time.

Thank you.
The Adult Inpatient Team

From Monday, 23rd March, the way we are offering bereavement support will change. Instead of face-to-face contact, you will be offered support over the phone or online. Our Bereavement Support Team will be contacting all our clients to discuss the best way to support you. We are still accepting new clients and referral will be in the usual way.

The service is open as normal and we have been receiving a number of phone calls from parents seeking advice. If your child is due to stay with us, please continue to call us on 0191 246 9060 as we are reviewing each child/ young adult on an individual basis. Alternatively, if you are looking for further guidance please visit the WellChild website.

From Monday, 23rd March, the way we deliver short courses, groups and Day Hospice within our Focus on Living Centre has changed.  We are now offering individual support at the hospice or at home, one-to-one support and counselling over the phone, and online group sessions. Online support includes art sessions, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, family support, and more.

Patients and carers have all been informed of this change and if you have any queries please call the service on 0191 285 0063 ext 2070.

The service has changed the way it is operating for many of our patients. Depending on individual patient need, contact will now either be a telephone review, bandaging treatment at home, or treatment at the clinic at St Oswald’s.

If you are unwell, especially if you have any of the previously mentioned Coronavirus symptoms, or a member of your household does, please:

  • do not attend your appointment and let us know as soon as you can.
  • if a member of staff is due to visit you in your home, please get in touch and we’ll work with you to decide the best way forward for your treatment.

Alternatively, if you are self-isolating or choose not to attend your appointment for another reason, please let us know as far in advance of your appointment as possible.

If you have any queries please call the Lymphoedema Service on 0191 246 9050.

We are constantly monitoring the Coronavirus situation and some changes have been made to some of our services (mentioned above). However, please continue to refer patients in to our services.

A number of email messages and intranet updates have been issued to our workforce as the situation develops. If you don’t have access to emails, please speak to your Line Manager or Volunteer Link.

Update on our shops - 02.09.2020

After lots of planning and preparation, we have installed new safety measures in every shop.

We are excited that many of our shops have now re-opened. Click here for a full list of our shops that are open, their opening times, and more information about donations.

From Monday 16th March, any group gatherings which are due to take place on-site with external contacts, will be cancelled, postponed or held via other means. Please speak to your St Oswald’s contact for more information.

“We are pleased to let you know that we have received some of the funding which the Government agreed to provide to Hospices across the UK, including St Oswald’s on 8th April 2020. We are very grateful to the Government for this funding and to Hospice UK who helped to secure it, and continues to handle this process on our behalf. The funding is a welcome boost and eases the pressure a little, particularly with immediate cash flow, however we are under no illusion that this will cover all costs, and so continue to need the support of our local community during this critical time.

As a local charity, we rely on, and are very grateful for the generosity of our supporters to help us raise the £7.5 million needed each year through charitable giving. This kind support ensures we can continue to provide expert and outstanding care services to all who need us. Thank you for your support.”

Steph Edusei

Chief Executive, St Oswald’s Hospice

As the Coronavirus situation changes, we will be updating this page. Please check back for updates.

Thank you for your co-operation.