It is essential that you read and follow this advice if you are coming into hospital for a procedure or surgery.
COVID-19 is still circulating in the community. Some patients need to have a PCR test 72 hours before their procedure. If this applies to you, you will receive an appointment for a test.
Having surgery within 7 weeks of having covid can place some patients at increased risk. You must contact your clinical team if you have had COVID-19 recently so they can consider this.
All patients are asked about symptoms of infection, and they may have a test on arrival to hospital. If you have symptoms, your clinical team will decide if it is still safe to have your procedure done or if it needs to be postponed.
You may receive separate information from the services directly.
COVID-19 symptoms or contacts
Please contact your clinical team ahead of your procedure if you:
- Have tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) or think you might have the virus.
- Have been in contact with a definite case of COVID-19
- Have any other symptoms of infection for example, diarrhoea and vomiting
The clinical team will advise you what to do next. The contact number is on the letter you have inviting you for your procedure
From 7 June 2022, staff and visitors no longer need to wear face masks in all non-clinical areas of Newcastle Hospitals, unless it is their personal preference to do so.
The change has been made in line with national guidance about the mandated use of masks in healthcare settings.
However, visitors will still be asked to continue to wear face masks in many ‘higher risk’ clinical areas – such as critical care, cancer wards and older people’s medicine – to help ensure we protect our more vulnerable patients or in wards where patients may be infectious.
Please be considerate of waiting areas where there might be vulnerable patients waiting. You may need to wear a mask in these areas such as, NCCC and renal outpatients and IOT outpatients.
Please ask staff to wear a mask if it makes you feel more comfortable for your visit.
If you have been told you are extremely vulnerable or are at higher-risk please ensure your clinical team are made aware.
Attend alone if possible
Attend your admission appointment alone if it is safe to do so. If you need to be accompanied this must be with only one other person.
We are currently allowing visitors in our hospitals, but on occasion we may need to stop visiting at short notice. Please speak to the ward about visiting arrangements.
Clean your hands
Use hand gel or wash your hands when you arrive and keep a distance between you and others to reduce the risk of transmission.
Staff will ask if you have been vaccinated – this is so that we can keep the vulnerable people in our hospital safe.
Important advice prior to your operation
10 days before your operation or procedure
- Try to avoid contact with other people as much as possible outside of your home especially avoid large gatherings.
- You may continue to work or attend school.
- If you use public transport please wear a face covering and regularly wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds.
- We do not recommend you travel abroad at this time.
3 days before your procedure or operation
- You may need to have a PCR done 72 hours before your procedure. If this applies to you, you will receive an appointment for a test.
- During this time we ask you to minimise contact with others if possible and to wear a mask when you do.
- You can still attend work and school
The healthcare team who have offered you surgery will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Their contact details can be found on your appointment and admission letters.
PALS (Patient Advice and Liaison Service) can also offer help, advice and information about NHS services.
You can contact them on:
Freephone 0800 032 02 02
The NHS website contains a lot of information about COVID-19 and health:
The Northern Cancer Alliance
If you would like more information but don’t have access to the internet, you could ask a friend or family member to help, or contact the healthcare team looking after you.