COVID-19 - Information and Advice

At Whittington Health NHS Trust we have implemented a number of changes to ensure that we can continue to provide safe, compassionate and effective care for those people who need it throughout the COVID-19 outbreak. All of these changes are designed to ensure the safety of our people and our patients.
The NHS website has lots of advice and helpful information about COVID-19.

COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

Is it safe to come to the hospital?

Yes. We have put a series of measures in place to ensure that if you need to visit us for care, you will be kept safe, whether you have to visit in an emergency or for a routine appointment.
If you have any concerns about your health it is safer to get them checked out sooner, rather than later as it is often easier for us to treat you before your symptoms worsen. If you have symptoms you are worried about your local pharmacy, NHS 111 and your GP practice are all open and ready to advise you. In an emergency our Accident and Emergency and 999 are still available and safe to use.
If we invite you for a routine appointment or to an outpatient's clinic you should attend, our clinicians will have assessed your case and we will only ask you to attend if it is in the best interests of your overall health.
To help you understand what coming to our hospital, one of our sites in the community or if we need to visit you at home we have prepared a series of videos to let you know what to expect. You can watch them by clicking here.
Remember: it is safe to see us, when you need us.

How do I prepare for my visit?

When you arrive at one of our sites, including our hospital, we will ask you to:
  • Wear a face mask when you arrive
  • Check our signage and follow any one-way systems we have in place
  • Maintain social distancing of 2 metres when moving around our hospital as well as in waiting areas and lifts
  • Attend alone where possible. Exceptions to this apply for Maternity and Children's services and for anyone needing assistance

Is the Emergency Department open?

Yes. Our Emergency Department is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As with all of our departments, you will need to wear a face covering and maintain social distancing when you arrive.

I have a routine appointment booked, shall I come in?

Yes. We would like to offer assurance that whilst you should not come to our hospital unless it is absolutely necessary it remains safe to attend and ask patients to attend all scheduled appointments. There is no reason to cancel an appointment. 

Can I visit my loved one in the hospital?

Our Visitors Policy is frequently reviewed due to current circumstances.
Please click on the links below to find out what our current policy is and how you can keep in touch with your loved ones if you are unable to visit during this time.

Changes to Specific Services

Maternity Services

Please visit our maternity services during COVID-19 section for specific advice for anyone visiting the hospital for a pre-booked appointment or for women who are having a baby.
This section will also cover home births, birth partners and bringing a partner to a scan.

Children's In Patient (IFOR) Ward and Children's ED

To ensure the NHS can continue to deliver the best emergency and planned care across north central London during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, temporary changes to services for children and young people are in place.
Find out the latest information about the changes.

Non-urgent patient transport services

During the Covid-19 pandemic, standard patient transport arrangements and its criteria have been superseded by new national guidance. 

Intensive Care Unit (ICU)

02 August 2021 update: Unfortunately, visiting to our ICU is now restricted to exceptions only. We have had to make this difficult decision to protect our most vulnerable patients at this time. Please call the ward if you have any questions. We will open visiting to this ward again as soon as it is safe to do so.

Trust-Wide Changes

Elective Surgery

At this time we need to prioritise the most sick and vulnerable as well as cancer patients.
In order to free up space, we are stopping elective activity and will only be doing urgent or cancer (day case or inpatient) elective surgery at the moment. This will free up space in recovery for more ITU capacity and allow us to train more people in ITU skills and management of acutely sick respiratory patients. Anyone affected by this will have been contacted by us.
We are working hard to reinstate these services as soon as it is safe to do so.

Community-based appointments

We are currently offering essential adult and children's services only. This is by video or telephone with face to face contacts only as essential. Health staff are prioritising essential work and are being redeployed to support the work of the hospital where possible.

Helpful Resources

Support for Patients with Dementia

Dementia Friends

Supporting Patients with Dementia and other Specific Needs - What Matters to Me
 We are committed to providing personalised and person centred care to all of our patients. In normal times, where a patient has a condition such as Dementia, Alzheimer's Disease or other conditions which might make it hard for them to communicate with our team we talk to them and their relatives and carers on admission about what is important to them. 
Together we create and complete a "What Matters To Me" sheet which can be seen by anyone visiting the patient to provide care. 
This helps us to understand the person, what makes them happy, what they don't like and the things that interest them and which they like to talk about. By getting to know patients who may find it difficult to articulate this for themselves we can try to ensure that their time in our hospital is as comfortable and familiar as possible and that they feel safe.
At the present time because visitors to our hospital are restricted* this conversation isn't always possible. Therefore we are providing an electronic copy of the "What Matters To Me" template which relatives or carers of anyone we are looking after can complete and email to us so that even in this unusual circumstances we can continue to provide the very best and personalised care.
All you need to do is to download this template, fill it in and email it back to us at: along with the patients name, date of birth and postcode and, if you know it, the ward they are staying on.
*We will always consider individual requests to visit in exceptional circumstances where it is in the overall best interest of and we can ensure the safety of all our patients and staff. Please speak to your relative's ward manager to discuss any individual circumstances.

COVID-19 Easy Read Guides

Below are guides to using NHS services such as your GP, attending outpatient appointments or coming to the Accident and Emergency Department written in 'easy-read' style. Whilst helpful for all, they are especially accessible for those who have specific needs such as a learning disability or autism.

Help and support for children with Autism

You can find specialist advice and support to help you and your child who has Autism during the outbreak by clicking here.

The information is tailored to children of different ages and will also help your child to understand Coronavirus.

How to stay well after being in hospital

We have produced a leaflet for patients about going home from hospital and how to stay safe and well.  Click here to read leaflet.

Support Whittington Health Charitable Funds

Find out about our Charity

If you would like to support us or find out more about what we have been doing over the past year and beyond to support our staff and patients, we have a dedicated section about our charity.
We are incredibly grateful for all of the thoughtful donations from our local community as well as local businesses who have also been so generous over the past year.

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We are involved in COVID-19 Research

Whittington Health is participating in the RECOVERY - Randomised Evaluation of COVID-19 Therapy study being run by Oxford University and endorsed by the Chief Medical Officers for the UK.
This trial will assess the effects of different treatments, including re-purposed and novel drugs, on major outcomes in COVID-19. All patients will receive the usual care from the participating hospitals.
You can find more details about the study as well as the Participant Information Sheet and Consent form by clicking here. If you would like to  get involved, please contact Kathryn Simpson, our Research Portfolio Manager.
Page last updated: 18 Oct 2021
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