3 April 2020
Page last updated on Thursday 2 December 2021 at 13:52.

Visiting at Royal Papworth Hospital remains limited. Everyone coming to our hospital must continue to wear a face mask and follow social distancing rules. Our full coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for inpatients, outpatients and visitors can be found below. 

Please do not turn up to our hospital if you have any symptoms of COVID-19.

Visiting policy

It is essential that we continue to limit footfall through our hospital to allow for social distancing and to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. This helps to protect our staff and vulnerable patients.

The below advice will be under continuous review and may change at any point in response to local infection rates. Thank you for your continued understanding. 


We recognise that receiving in-person visits can be an important part of a patient’s rehabilitation. Patients who are staying in our hospital for more than 48 hours can have one visitor for one hour at a time, three times per week. It must be the same person visiting each time. 

Visitors must come directly to and from the ward and should not wait inside the hospital. You can book a face-to-face visit via the link below.

Book an inpatient visit


Patients attending an outpatient appointment can bring one other person with them. If you arrive with more than a plus one, the additional people will be asked to remain outside. 

Bespoke 'outpatient appointments' guidance for different patient groups is available below. 

Day Ward 

Patients on Day Ward are not currently permitted a plus one due to social distancing and capacity restrictions. 


Children are not permitted on site.  

Outpatient appointments

Outpatients can bring one other person with them to their appointment. All patients and visitors must wear a surgical mask throughout their visit - these can be obtained from our entrances when you arrive. 

All outpatient appointments are being continuously reviewed. If your consultant feels you need to be seen face-to-face then that is the appointment we will offer you. Non-urgent appointments have been cancelled or moved to virtual consultations - either via telephone or video - as appropriate.


Access a video consultation

If you are invited to attend an appointment at the hospital, please rest assured we will keep you safe and you should still come. If you have not heard from the relevant team about your appointment, then yours is still due to take place at the hospital. 

We have a screening tool using text messages that will help us identify whether patients have COVID-19 symptoms before they attend face-to-face hospital appointments. You may receive a text message from +447860039092 before your appointment, asking you if you have any symptoms of COVID-19. Please follow the instructions in the text message to let us know. If you do have symptoms, please do not turn up at our hospital. We will get in touch with you to re-arrange your appointment. 

We hope this 'virtual visit' below helps to reassure you ahead of your visit.


Further outpatient information for patients:

Adult congenital heart disease (ACHD)

We have taken steps to increase the number of patients we see in face-to-face clinics, although telephone appointments will remain in place where appropriate. You will be contacted by the ACHD team who will let you know where your appointment will take place. 

If you have any further enquires after reading the government guidelines, in order to keep telephone calls to a minimum, please email our ACHD nurses

Further COVID-19 information for ACHD patients is available here.

Cystic fibrosis, lung defence and immunology

Our clinics are running as a mix of face-to-face appointments where required in addition to telephone and video consultations. 

Please do not attend the hospital for an in-person appointment unless you have been invited to do so.

We continue to bring in people as inpatients when hospital care/ IV treatment is required.

Further COVID-19 information for cystic fibrosis, lung defence and immunology patients is available here.

Interstitial lung disease (ILD)

To reduce the infection risk to our patients, we are offering a mixture of face-to-face and telephone appointments as deemed appropriate for individual patient needs. 

We encourage all patients with interstitial lung disease to have a 'booster dose' of the coronavirus vaccine. This is being organised locally by GP practices. 

A small percentage of patients will be eligible for a 'third primary dose' of the vaccine and then also a 'booster dose' six months later. 

Further COVID-19 information for ILD patients is available here.

You can contact our ILD specialist nurses by telephone on 01223 638018. 


Homecare services are continuing to operate. Patients should carry on with their usual delivery schedules unless otherwise directed. You can arrange for a relative, friend or community volunteer to collect your medicine. Some cystic fibrosis patients may see a change to delivery schedules in the future for specialist medications. 

Further COVID-19 information for outpatient prescriptions, including Homecare, is available here.

Pulmonary hypertension

The pulmonary hypertension service has now resumed face-to-face consultations for the majority of our patients. We are still holding some telephone clinics and it will be made clear on your appointment letter if you are required to attend our hospital in person or via telephone clinic. If you have a telephone appointment, please wait by your phone and we will contact you on the day, on or as close to the time stated on your letter. 

If you are attending a face-to-face appointment please attend in good time and let us know as soon as possible if you are unable to make the appointment so that this slot can then be made available to another patient.

If you need to contact the pulmonary hypertension team, please call 01223 638826.

Further information can be found on the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA UK) website.

Respiratory Support and Sleep Centre

As part of our response to COVID-19, some of our outpatient activity is being carried out by telephone in order to reduce the risk to our patients.

The team continue to review and prioritise new referrals.

If we have had to delay your appointment or admission, we are sorry for this inconvenience.

The CPAP support line continues to operate as normal on 01223 638526.

Thoracic oncology

All patients attending our thoracic oncology clinic may bring one person with them to their appointment. Our lung cancer pathway has remained open, including appointments, diagnostic services and surgery. 

Some routine, follow-up appointments may take place virtually. 


There are restrictions on the number of outpatients that we can bring into Royal Papworth Hospital in order to keep all patients safe.  

We will contact you before your next appointment and let you know whether we will see you in person or virtually.

If you are uncertain whether you should attend your appointment, please contact the transplant unit on 01223 638007.

We are still performing transplants.

Further COVID-19 information for heart transplant and lung transplant patients is available here.

Face masks, social distancing and infection prevention control

We have very high standards of infection control throughout Royal Papworth Hospital. If you need to come to our hospital for treatment, you can be confident you will be cared for safely. 

All patients and visitors are required to wear medical grade surgical masks throughout their visit to our hospital, as do our staff. These will be provided for you at our entrances. Inpatients do not need to wear a mask when they are inside their own room (all our rooms are single occupancy, with en-suite). 

If you come into the hospital for treatment, you will notice a number of measures to ensure the safety of staff and patients, including: red markings and stickers on the floor to indicate a two-metre distance; perspex screens at reception desks; markings in our lift to ensure social distancing; one-way systems; and extra wall-mounted hand sanitisers installed throughout the hospital.

If you have access to lateral flow home testing kits for COVID-19, we would be grateful if you could carry out a test before coming into our hospital. 

Elective surgery and procedures

Across the NHS we have had to focus on our COVID-19 response and other patients who are in most urgent need of treatment. People whose care is deemed 'urgent' have been prioritised, however we are regularly reviewing patients on our waiting lists and if we feel you would be adversely impacted by waiting longer, you will be booked in. This priority is being assess by clinical need and not necessarily the length of time an individual has been waiting. 

We have an important duty to protect patients who are on our waiting lists and fully understand that if you are waiting for treatment you might be disappointed and worried. If you are on our waiting list and begin to feel unwell at any point, please contact your GP (or call 111 if non-urgent and 999 in an emergency).

Emergency surgery and procedures

Our emergency pathways have remained open throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, including: heart, lung and heart-lung transplants; heart attack treatment including the insertion of coronary stents; lung cancer surgery; and other emergency surgery such as aortic dissection.

Protecting people more at risk from COVID-19

Protecting people who are more at risk from COVID-19 is important. Many of our patients - including those with severe respiratory conditions and people on immunosupression drugs - are considered 'clinically extremely vulnerable'.

We would urge everyone to continue to follow the guidance to protect everyone in society. Please get both doses of a coronavirus vaccine and your booster, and continue to champion public health measures such as wearing a mask, meeting outside where possible and ventilating indoor spaces. 

COVID-19 vaccine

People aged 12 and over can now get vaccinated against COVID-19. The booster vaccine is also available to eligible groups.

You do not need to wait to be contacted and can book your COVID-19 vaccination online. 

Information on the vaccine is available on the nhs.uk website.