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Mandatory face masks no longer required by our Trust

Mandatory face masks no longer required by our Trust
31 August 2022

From Thursday 1 September 2022, visitors to St Mary’s Hospital and our other sites are once again no longer required to wear face masks, unless it is their personal preference to do so.

These changes have been made in line with national guidance on the mandated use of face masks in healthcare settings and reducing numbers of positive cases.

To continue to protect those who are most vulnerable and at high risk, we ask that the wearing of face masks continues where immunocompromised patients are treated for example in oncology, haematology and chemotherapy departments.

It remains a priority to help to keep each other, our patients and our community safe and in order to continue to protect those who are vulnerable and of high risk, the following guidance must be followed:

  • Visitors who are presenting with respiratory / COVID symptoms, are on a respiratory pathway, or are immunocompromised, should wear a face mask if this can be tolerated and deemed safe.
  • Visitors may be asked to wear a face mask for specific reasons including in our ‘higher risk’ clinical areas, such as the respiratory department and intensive care unit. Please speak to the ward or department you are visiting if you are unsure whether you need to wear a face mask.
  • Vulnerable and high-risk patients and visitors can ask staff members to wear a face mask, and these will continue to be available to those who choose to wear one.
  • All visitors should continue to sanitise their hands on entering and leaving the hospital and ward or department.

Many people will continue to choose to wear a face mask as their personal preference and this decision will be fully supported by the Trust.

Every entrance will continue to have a supply of masks and hand gel for people to use as they enter our hospital site.

Juliet Pearce, Director of Nursing, Midwifery and AHPs said:

“Thank you to everyone who has followed the range of infection prevention and control guidance in place throughout the pandemic and more recently when we felt it necessary to reintroduce mask wearing on our sites. The actions have made a positive difference to our community.

“The Island’s level of COVID is currently low, however this guidance may change again at any time if there is a known or suspected outbreak of COVID, or a new variant emerges."

Further information can be found on our Patient and Visitors’ webpage: www.iow.nhs.uk/visiting

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