As mentioned in last week’s column, I am really pleased to confirm that in-patient visiting has been re-introduced at our hospitals after it was previously suspended in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is a positive step for the Trust as we know how important it is to patients, and friends and family alike. It was a real difficult decision for us to suspend visiting but it was crucial as we care for some of the most sick and vulnerable at the Royal Shrewsbury and Princess Royal Hospitals.

We have had to balance the importance of patients seeing their loved ones with the high levels of COVID-19 in our communities and hospitals and we will continue to do this as we keep the new requirements under constant review.

Throughout the pandemic, and in line with national guidelines, our hospitals needed to restrict visiting to adult wards to just compassionate visiting and for those patients with specific needs.

Now all adult in-patients are allowed one visitor for one hour per day between the times of 11.30am and 8pm. We will continue to provide the additional flexibility and support needed for compassionate visiting. Separate arrangements remain in place for Critical Care, Maternity, Children’s wards, and the Neonatal Unit.

To help restrict the spread of the virus, I would also ask visitors to follow some key requirements, including wearing face masks and observing social distancing when in the hospitals. They are also encouraged to take a LFT at home beforehand.

COVID-19 numbers in the hospitals remain at significant levels and – in order to protect those being cared for, visitors, and staff – visitors will be asked to not attend if they are COVID-19 positive, are showing relevant symptoms, or have been in contact with someone who is COVID-19 positive.

Full details can be seen on our website: Thank you for your patience and understanding, and your continued help in protecting those we care for.

Those that are eligible for the COVID-19 spring booster are encouraged to come forward and book an appointment. This call comes amidst concern that some people, particularly those aged 75 and over, who are eligible now for their next vaccination are choosing to wait until they are called in by their local NHS.

Anyone who is who is aged 75 years and over (or aged 12 years and over with a weakened immune system) can receive their spring booster around six months after their previous COVID-19 vaccination. Appointments can be booked via the National Booking System or by calling 119. Details of walk-in clinics can also be found at

Finally, the Maternity Voices Partnership Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin will be holding a ‘Maternity Natters’ session next Tuesday where service users are invited to share their experiences and ideas around managing expectations of maternity care.

The themes, anonymised experiences, and ideas discussed in the virtual talk will be fed back to the Maternity Transformation Team at SaTH. This feedback will then be used to shape the planning and prioritisation of changes around “Managing Expectations”, the next theme of our User Experience (UX) system.

The innovative UX System captures the feedback of those whose voices matter the most and focuses on a number of different key areas and themes.