Service changes and visiting during the COVID-19 pandemic

During this COVID-19 pandemic there may be changes in the way some of our services work. Contact the service directly to check how services are being delivered and follow their advice.

Some of our services now offer video consultations. You should speak to your clinician if this is something you would like them to consider. You can find out more about video consultation here.



Contact the ward you wish to visit in advance for guidance and instructions for a safe visit.

You can read some general  NHS guidance on visiting healthcare inpatient settings.pdf [pdf] 89KB

If you need help in a mental health crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic outside office hours please contact our crisis team: Help in a crisis

For other medical advice and support contact your GP or visit NHS 111

Only visit your local Emergency Department for serious life-threatening conditions that need immediate medical attention including persistent severe chest pain, loss of consciousness, acute confused state, severe breathlessness, severe blood loss, serious burns or suspected stroke.

Infection prevention and control

A staff member using hand gel

Our job is to stop service users and patients getting infections as a result of their care. We make sure that when people do pick up these infections, we learn about why it happened and use training and education to stop it from happening again.

We provide:

  • Training and education - we make sure staff are up to date with safe working practices, know their responsibilities towards infection prevention and control and how it affects their patients or service users
  • Audit - we monitor aspects of patient care and environmental standards throughout the Trust and areas used by Trust staff
  • Advice - we are available to help with infection prevention and control issues
  • Information - we make sure that the Trust's infection control policies are in line with national guidance and best practice. We make information on common infections available for staff patients and visitors of the Trust
  • Outbreak management - if an outbreak occurs the team provides daily advice to manage the situation
  • Incident reporting - we analyse and review why incidents happen. We use what we learn to support training, update our policies and ensure safer practices
  • Campaigns - the team provide support with local and national campaigns such as sepsis awareness, flu, hand hygiene, and bare below the elbows
  • Anne-Maria Newham, MBE, is Executive Director of Nursing, Quality and Allied Health Professionals. She is also the Board member responsible for infection prevention and control (DIPC)
  • Linda Chibuzor, Deputy Director of Nursing, is the Deputy DIPC

How you can help

Diarrhoea and/or vomiting

If you have suffered from diarrhoea and/or vomiting in the last 48 hours please do not visit a ward or attend an appointment. Please contact the department to advise and rearrange any appointments. 

Find out more about norovirus and how to stop it spreading on the NHS website.


Hand hygiene

Someone washing their hands at a sinkWashing hands is the most important way to prevent infection.

Visitors as well as staff play a key role in supporting our Trust inpatient areas to remain infection free by making sure their hands have been washed with soap and water. Alcohol hand gel is also available in many areas. Visitors should clean their hands on arrival and before leaving inpatient areas.

If you're worried that a member of staff may have forgotten to clean their hands, it's OK to remind them.



Sepsis is a life threatening condition which happens when the body’s response to an infection injures its own tissues and organs. It can lead to death if it is not recognised and treated quickly. Any infection can cause sepsis.

Every year in the UK there are 150,000 cases of sepsis, resulting in a staggering 44,000 deaths.

We want to encourage everyone, every time they come across someone with any type of infection and they appear unwell to think, could it be sepsis? Fast action saves lives.

The symptoms in adults spell out the word 'SEPSIS': Slurred speech or confusion, Extreme shivering or muscle pain, Passing no urine in a day, Severe breathlessness, "I feel like I might die", Skin mottled or discoloured.

The symptoms in babies and children are: breathing very fast, having a 'fit' or convulsion, looking mottled bluish or pale. a rash that does not fade when you press it, being very lethargic or difficult to wake, feeling abnormally cold to touch.

For more information on the condition you can visit



Our Executive Medical Director getting her flu jabFlu can be a severe illness, even for people who are fit and well.

The virus can change and the vaccine only protects you for about one season, so you should have a vaccination every year. People at high risk from flu can have the jab at their GP practice.

The Trust also encourages all front line staff to get the flu jab every year, to prevent the spread of infections to our patients and service users.

Find out more about flu on the NHS website.  

Find out more about flu and the flu vaccine

Information about flu [docx] 47KB


More information on infections

Contact details

Highbury Hospital

Tel: 0115 969 1300 ext. 14092


Tuxford Clinic

Tel: 01777871664


Birch House

Tel: 0115 969 1300 ext. 13185


Birch House

Tel: 01777 248321 ext. 7765



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