Changes to visiting and inpatient leave arrangements across Kent and Medway mental health services from 18 January 2022

Date added: 18 January 2022

As of today, Tuesday 18 January 2022, we will reopen visiting to patient wards and inpatient leave on our wards. 

To minimise the spread of COVID-19 and to continue to protect the safety of our patients, their loved ones and our staff, we will be following a controlled approach as follows:

If you would like to visit a patient on our wards

Visits should be made by appointment only, unless there are extenuating circumstances.

All visits will take place in a dedicated, ventilated room with enough space for safe social distancing. The maximum visiting time is one hour.

We would kindly ask that visitors:

  • Take a lateral flow test before arriving and do not visit if you or any member of your house have a positive diagnosis of COVID-19
  • Wear a face covering at all times, unless medically exempt
  • Wash and sanitise your hands before and after your visit
  • Bring as few personal belongings with you as possible, including gifts and food for the person you are visiting

If an inpatient tests positive with COVID-19

For inpatients with COVID-19, isolation has been reduced to 10 days after the onset of symptoms or their first positive COVID-19 test if they do not have any symptoms, provided the individual no longer has a fever and has no underlying severe immunosuppression.

If the patient continues to present with a fever, isolation must continue until they are fever free for 48 hours. A cough or a loss of, or change in, normal sense of smell or taste (anosmia), may persist in some individuals for several weeks, and are not considered an indication of ongoing infection when other symptoms have resolved. 

If an inpatient comes into contact with someone who tests positive with COVID-19

Inpatients who come into contact with a positive COVID-19 individual will need to isolate and have regular testing. This time has been reduced to 10 days.

We know this is a challenging time and all of us at Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust thank you for playing your part in keeping our patients, staff and community safe.