MY Loved Ones – keeping in touch with patients

MY Loved ones 2

We appreciate how difficult it must be when you are unable to visit and keep in touch with a loved one who is in hospital. Therefore, at Mid Yorks we have introduced a number of ways to support patient-to-relative communication at this difficult time during the Covid-19 pandemic.  

Family Liaison Officers

We have established a number of additional staff to support some of our wards at Pinderfields to support communication between loved ones and patients. Through conversations with ward staff directly involved in a patient's care, the Family Liaison Officers will contact families/loved ones about the patient's wellbeing.

Any indepth discussions requiring more clinical input continue to be carried out by clinical ward staff. Unfortunately, we are unable to update multiple family members or loved ones for each patient, so ask that each patient has a primary contact, who can then share updates with other family members/friends.

We hope this additional role will reduce the need for you to try and call the ward for an update, as we acknowledge it can be difficult to get through.

Message from home service

A dedicated email inbox has been launched from Monday 20 April to enable relatives to post a short message (approx 50 words) to a family member who is receiving care at Mid Yorks.

Our staff will be monitoring this inbox and will pass on these messages to patients on a regular basis.

To ensure your message is received by the correct person, please make sure that the following information is included in your email:

  • Name of the patient
  • Ward location
  • Date of birth or address of the patient

Messages should be emailed to midyorks.messagefromhome@nhs.net.

If you do not have access to email, you can telephone 01924 542972 from 8.30am–4.30pm Monday to Friday to share your message. A member of staff will capture your message and relay this to the patient. Any messages received over a weekend will be delivered on the next working day.

Video calls

We recognise that communication with family and friends is important to patients for their support and wellbeing, and with the visiting restrictions that are currently in place at the Trust, it is essential for families to stay in touch.

iPads have been made available on our wards to support relatives using video calls to communicate with patients who do not have access to their own tablets or smartphones. Video calls will be undertaken using an app called ‘Jitsi Meet’.

Guidance is available for relatives in the use of Jitsi Meet on a tablet, smartphone or PC.

Jitsi Meet guidance for relatives Jitsi guide for relatives.pdf 573KB

You can email midyorks.messagefromhome@nhs.net or call 01924 542972 from 8am–4.30pm Monday to Friday and 8.30am–4.30pm on Saturday and Sunday so that our staff can arrange a suitable time for a patient video call.

Personal belongings for patients

We understand that due to the visiting restrictions that are currently in place at the Trust, relatives may need to bring in some essential items of property for a family member for delivery to a ward.

Between Monday to Friday 8.30am to 3pm patient property may be brought to the main entrance of Pinderfields and Dewsbury for receipt by volunteers and onward delivery to the wards; at Pontefract hospital, reception staff can take receipt.

Patient property must be fully enclosed in a wipeable/plastic bag and ensure you are able to provide the full name, date of birth and ward location of the patient.

Outside of these times, please arrange with the ward to drop off belongings at the ward entrance.

Spiritual care

Our Chaplaincy team has qualified representatives from major faith communities and is available 24 hours, seven days a week.

Spiritual and pastoral care is offered to any patient of any faith, as well as those of no faith.

Articles of faith and prayer cards are available on wards from our Chaplaincy Office, and can also be printed for patients by our ward staff.

Staff photographs

We recognise that when our staff have to wear masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE) and clothing when carrying out their jobs, this has the potential to increase patients’ fears and feelings of isolation at an already difficult time.

In response to this, our staff are showing photographs of their faces to the patients that they are caring for in order to establish a more personal and caring relationship.