Information about all wards
You will probably have lots of questions about your stay in hospital, this page provides general information about finding and settling into your ward.
For information about the specific ward that you will be staying on please see the wards page.
Remember: Our staff are here to look after you so don't be afraid to ask them for help and advice.
Arriving at hospital
Your admission letter gives details of where to go when you arrive at the hospital. If you are not sure, please ask at the hospital's main reception.
When you reach your ward, please hand any medicines to your nurse. The ward staff will keep a record of all the medicines you take during your stay. Tell us if you have any allergies or side effects to any medicines.
In response to patient comments, we have created a welcome pack to help make your stay as comfortable as possible and to involve you in your care. The person who welcomes you onto the ward will give you this.
The welcome pack contains:
a dignity pack including ear plugs, an eye mask, hand wipes, toothpaste and a toothbrush
non-slip socks to reduce falls
a safety card to help make patients' hospital stay with us safe
a contact card so that patients and relatives can ask for help at any time
a notepad and pencil to make notes and write down questions
a welcome booklet that explains what to expect during your stay, the ward routine, who you may meet and what will happen on the day you are ready to leave hospital.
Please ask us if there is anything you need to know, don't understand or need help with. Our staff are here to help you.
You will receive a hospital identity bracelet with your name on it. Please wear this all the time you are in the hospital.
Your accommodation - our same-sex declaration
You will usually be staying in a ward that specialises in the care of the condition or illness that you have. These wards are made up of separate bays.
you will share the room you sleep in with patients of the same sex as you
same sex toilets and bathrooms will be close to your bed area
You will only share accommodation with patients of the opposite sex in exceptional situations, for example if you need specialist equipment, such as in intensive care or if you choose to, for instance on our dialysis units.
We will not turn patients away just because a 'right-sex' bed is not immediately available. If you have any concerns, please speak to your ward or unit's sister, charge nurse or matron.
For more information see our same sex accommodation declaration (PDF 26Kb).
For more information on our plans for the future see our action plan (PDF 38Kb).
We provide a bedside cupboard for your personal belongings. This is not lockable and we do not recommend using it for valuable items. We recommend leaving your valuables at home.
There are entertainment units for your personal use, which have a telephone, TV and radio. Charges apply.
Your ward may also have a day room where you can watch TV or sit with your visitors.
Keeping in touch with friends and family
You can use your bedside telephone for a fee. There are also card-operated payphones around the hospital. Your relatives and friends can call you at your bedside phone in most cases. However, please note that incoming calls are charged at a premium rate to the caller.
mobile phones should not be used in some areas as they might interfere with some medical equipment or disturb other patients
in the places where you can use them, please keep them on silent mode and be considerate to other patients
Your relatives or friends are welcome to write to you in hospital. Please ask them to address the letter or card with your full name and the name of your ward, followed by the hospital address (at the bottom of this page). Don't forget to tell them which hospital you are in.
If you would like to send a letter yourself, please hand this to your nurse who will post it for you. You will need to provide a stamp.
You are not allowed to smoke anywhere in our buildings or immediately outside entrances and exits. Please only use the designated smoking shelters. See the no smoking page for more information and for help on how to quit.