PATIENTS at Fylde coast hospitals can now spend more time with loved ones after visiting hours were extended.
Previously, visiting was restricted to two hours a day – from 2pm until 3pm and 7pm until 8pm.
But now a number of wards have adopted a more open approach.
Patients on Ward 19 at Blackpool Victoria Hospital – which increased visiting to 11am -12.30pm, 1.30-5.30pm and 6.30-8pm – felt it was the right prescription.
Michelle Wikes, 41, from Blackpool, said it meant her son, a TA cadet, could visit before going on an 11-day camp.
She said: “With school hours I saw little of my children when I was in hospital. Being able to see my children has made such a big difference.”
Sue Jones, matron for unscheduled care, said: “The time family spend with patients is important and we did not want to take away those precious moments, although we need to be aware there are sick patients on the wards and make sure we get the right balance between rest, mealtimes and visiting.
“We had been receiving complaints when people came to visit there was not enough time for family to get updated on patient care.
“We have ensured sisters or senior nurses are available during visiting times to talk to relatives.”
Patient Jennifer Duckworth, 65, of Cleveleys, added: “My family have been able to visit every day. The original hours were too restrictive.”
New times: Acute Medical Ward and Ward 18: 11am -noon, 2-5pm and 6-8pm; Wards 11, 12, 23 and 24: 2pm-5pm and 6-8pm; Wards 25 and 26: 2pm-8pm (with protected mealtimes); ITU: 3-7pm; Clifton and Rossall Hospitals 2-8pm.