Parents and carers whose loved ones are young patients on the Children’s Ward (Ward 21) at Walsall Manor Hospital or in its Neonatal Unit will be able to share the responsibility from today, Monday 6 September, thanks to new arrangements being introduced.
Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust currently welcomes one resident parent/carer who is able to stay with their child. From today they will be able to swap with one other parent/carer as long as they are from the same household and have taken a daily Covid test (Lateral Flow Test) that gives a negative result.
They will be able to use the testing bus at Walsall Manor Hospital between 10.30am and 5pm daily before reporting to the Welcome Hub and going on to the ward or into the unit.
Matron Tania Bruce said: “We are working hard to minimise the risk of COVID-19 infection and keep the children’s ward and Neonatal Unit – as well as the hospital – as safe as possible for everyone who uses our services and the staff who work here.
“Resident parents/carers are tested upon their child’s admission and we are working with the Patient Experience Team to support the “swapping” parent/carer to be tested upon arrival at hospital.
“We recognise that having a poorly child or a baby who needs specialist, neonatal care, places a lot of pressure on families, particularly where there are other children who need care and support and we are trying to ease the situation as much as possible while prioritising the necessary measures that we all need to take during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’d like to thank our parents/carers for their understanding at this time.”
Andrew Rice, Patient Experience Manager added: “We have recently introduced Carers Passports and each resident parent/carer will be given one of these when their child is admitted.
“We will support “swapping” parents/carers at our Welcome Hub in the main atrium of the hospital which operates between 8am and 7pm each day, including weekends.”