In this section
We know it can be a worry to have a loved one in hospital, and that visits from loved ones, family, and friends can help a patient’s wellbeing and recovery.
Please do not visit if you are feeling poorly. You must not visit if you are unwell, or if someone in your household, or a close contact is unwell.
We encourage all visitors to sanitise their hands when arriving at the hospital. There are hand-sanitising points around the hospital – please feel free to use them.
We welcome visitors between 2pm - 8pm.
Two visitors for one patient at one time, please.
Please sit on the chairs, rather than the beds.
Not all wards/sites adhere to the above times. Please check arrangements for the area you are visiting or ask the nurse in charge e.g. Visitors to New Selby Memorial Hospital can visit between 1pm – 7:30pm.
Visitors with assistance dogs are welcome (except where exceptional circumstances apply).
Children under the age of 12 should not visit the hospital. Exceptions to this are for the child or the grandchild of the patient, or for a young carer. Children’s visits should be limited to 30 minutes. Children must be accompanied by an adult and always supervised.
Carers, John’s Campaign, and reasonable adjustments
Carers will be offered the flexibility to be with their loved ones when most needed, and we understand that this may be outside of our normal visiting hours. Carers are welcome to stay and visit for longer, including overnight where possible.
We support John’s campaign and staff are encouraged to take a flexible approach to visiting hours and make reasonable adjustments as needed to support treatment and care.
Involving carers can help to minimise distress and remove barriers to enable people to receive care. For example, being flexible to allow a Carer to stay longer or accompany someone in hospital would be a reasonable adjustment to support people living with dementia. See more information for carers about how we follow John’s Campaign.
This approach can also be used to support people with a sensory impairment or communication needs, autistic people, people who experience anxiety or other mental health conditions, people who have a learning disability, and people with other disabilities or complex needs.
Please talk to the nurse in charge to plan for visiting outside of normal hours and overnight stays. Young carers are not able to stay overnight.
Mealtimes and food
Please do not bring food into the hospital.
Carers who are supporting a loved one in hospital may wish to come in and help with mealtimes. Please talk to the nurse in charge on the ward to plan for this.
Some wards prefer not to have visitors during mealtimes to be sure patients eat enough food to help with their recovery. Check with the nurse in charge, as it may be different for carers and patients with a need for reasonable adjustments.
Mobile phones and WiFi
You can use your mobile and/or digital devices in most areas of the hospital and you can use hospital WiFi. More details on facilities available across our Trust, including WiFi.
There are some areas where using your mobile and/or device is not allowed. There will be signs telling you not to use your mobile and/or device – please follow them.
Please do not use mobiles and/or devices within two metres of medical equipment. This may interfere with the operation of the equipment and be detrimental to patients – please ask if you're unsure.
Parking at our hospitals
There are car parks at all our hospital sites. Car parking charges are in place up until 8 pm.
If you have a Blue Badge, parking is free of charge in designated Blue Badge Holder parking areas.
- York Hospital accessible parking information
- Scarborough Hospital accessible parking information
- Bridlington Hospital accessible parking information
Our hospitals are Smokefree - you will not be able to smoke whilst you are here. This means we will ask you not to bring cigarettes with you or ask your visitors to bring them in for you.
Vaping is allowed outside at all our hospitals, and if you vape please be considerate of others and try to vape away from near entrances and open windows.
To make sure that everyone has the best experience of our Smokefree hospitals, we will be asking everyone if they smoke and will aim to provide a stop-smoking medicine within half an hour of patients being admitted.
Visiting areas with special requirements
Maternity wards (G2 and Hawthorn)
Visiting for partners or a designated person is between 8 am and 8 pm.
Two visitors for a patient at one time, please.
Partners or family may stay until mother and baby are settled for the night. Unfortunately, we do not have facilities for partners or family to stay overnight on the ward.
Our visiting times for other family is 3 pm to 4.30 pm and 7 pm to 8 pm. We ask that this is not more than two visitors at a time in addition to the partner/designated person.
Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU)
Parents/guardians and siblings of the baby are welcome to visit at any time. Please follow hand hygiene rules and mask-wearing advice when visiting SCBU.
If other people would like to visit, this needs to be discussed with the nurse in charge.
Intensive Care Unit (ICU)
Parents and siblings of the baby are welcome to visit.
Please follow hand hygiene rules and mask-wearing advice when visiting the ICU.
If more visitors would like to visit, this should be discussed with the nurse in charge.
Visiting on the children’s ward is open 24 hours a day for parents and carers.
For other family and friends, visiting times are 2 pm - 8 pm and there can be only four visitors to a patient.
Visitors under the age of 18 years must be accompanied by an adult and always supervised.
Emergency Departments (EDs and A&E)
The rules for the emergency department (ED or A&E) are different. There are no visiting hours for ED because they are very busy and often have very poorly patients needing urgent and emergency care so visiting friends and family is discouraged.
People coming to ED for treatment may have one family member/friend accompany them (unless reasonable adjustments are required e.g. to minimise distress or support communications, please talk to the nurse in charge). If the patient is a child under 16yrs both parents can accompany them.
- Information about York Hospital's emergency department
- Information about Scarborough Hospital's emergency department
What if the ward I want to visit is closed?
Wards may close if there is an infection or a high risk of infection. The ward is closed to control the spread of the infection and for the safety of the patients and staff
When a ward is closed, visiting is limited or paused until the ward reopens.
Restricted visiting may continue for patients in:
Restricted visiting may also continue as part of reasonable adjustments necessary to help someone get the care they need.
What if more than two of us would like to visit at once?
Staff on the ward may ask some visitors to wait in the waiting area.
Staff may decide to cut the visit short if it is felt to be best for the patient.
Some areas allow more than two people to visit – please check with the nurse in charge.
For patients receiving End of Life care, there are no restrictions on visiting times or length of visit.
What happens if I would like to come with my loved one for an appointment?
You are welcome to come with the patient for an appointment to support them. However, sometimes you may be asked to leave the clinical area to allow care or treatment to be delivered. Visitors may use available seating in Outpatient and Day Case areas.
We understand that sometimes reasonable adjustments are needed for someone to access care with support of a carer, for example. Please arrange with the nurse in charge.
What if I would like to visit a patient outside of visiting hours?
If you would like to visit your loved one outside of the normal visiting hours, this is best agreed with the nurse in charge of the ward. The decision will be made at the nurse’s discretion and will consider the patient’s best interests and needs.
Can I bring a pet?
This is due to infection prevention and control guidance to help keep patients and staff safe.
Registered Assistance and Service Dogs are welcome (except in exceptional circumstances). These are working dogs who support people with hearing or visual impairment, and other access needs.
Updated 20 October 2022.