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Hospital bans visitors' flowers

16 November 09 11:04 GMT

Visitors at York Hospital are to be banned from taking flowers or plants on to wards in an attempt to control the spread of infections.

The hospital trust said the move would keep clinical areas "clean and safe" for patients. It will ask visitors to bring other gifts instead.

Hospitals across England have banned flowers on wards in recent years.

A 10-point visitor code, which comes into force on 1 December, will also ask visitors not to sit on patients' beds.

The code states that visitors are only allowed between 1500 and 1630 GMT and between 1830 and 2000 GMT, no more than two visitors are allowed at a bedside at a time and children aged under 12 cannot visit unless the patient is their parent.

Winter virus

Libby McManus, chief nurse at York Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: "Patients now spend a much shorter time in hospital, and we will be asking visitors and local florists to arrange for flowers to be delivered to people's homes to be enjoyed after patients are discharged.

"We know that bringing gifts is something that many people like to do, and we know that this can make a patient's stay more pleasant, therefore we're asking people for their suggestions as to what can be brought in, as an alternative to flowers."

Ms McManus said infection control was "particularly important as we get into the winter period when winter vomiting virus and flu are prevalent in the community".

The trust said it would "always try to be flexible in difficult or unusual circumstances".

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