Inpatient visiting during the COVID-19 outbreak

Unfortunately, visits to all inpatient units have been suspended during the COVID-19 outbreak unless in exceptional circumstances.

This is in line with government advice to stay home to prevent the spread of the virus.

Instead, we now offer a virtual inpatient visiting service where electronic tablets are given to patients so they can have video contact with relatives and friends.

Access to patients is by appointment – you can't just phone up.

To arrange a virtual visit, please get in touch with the ward your friend or relative is on.

Ward staff may also contact relatives, after consultation with a patient, to arrange a call.

Once you're meeting has been scheduled, please find out how virtual visiting works below.

  • you will need an internet-connected device such as a PC, laptop, tablet, iPad or a smartphone
  • your device must have a camera and an internet web browser such as Google Chrome or Safari. Please note, this service does not work on Internet Explorer
  • you can use virtual visiting on a PC, Mac or an iOS/Android device, using a Google Chrome (for PC/Mac/all mobile devices) /Apple Safari (for Macs and iOS devices) browser. Download Google Chrome or Safari for free
  • five minutes before your scheduled visiting, click the hospital you require below. You will now enter the waiting room ready for the video call

Physical health

Alderney Hospital

Blandford Hospital

Bridport Hospital

Swanage Hospital

Victoria Hospital (Wimborne)

Westhaven Hospital

Westminster Hospital (Shaftesbury)

Yeatman Hospital (Sherborne)

Mental health

Waterston (Linden)

Glendinning

Melstock

Nightingale House

Nightingale Court

Pebble Lodge

St Ann's Hospital

In the waiting room

  • click 'start video call' and follow the instructions on screen
  • entering the first and last name of the patient you would like to talk to
  • the ward will see you arrive in the waiting area and will join you as soon as they are ready to start your virtual visit

The system is completely confidential and secure. The calls cannot be accessed by anyone else except for any clinical staff who may be required to help a patient answer the call.

Video calls over a Wi-Fi connection are free (as part of your normal internet plan). If you make a video call using mobile data, you may be charged extra by your provider if you go over your data allowance. You won’t be using data whilst in the waiting room, only when you connect.

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