Advice regarding Covid-19

COVID-19 Update

Update to visiting restrictions – 14th March 2022

  • Visitors are reminded that whilst restrictions in general have been lifted, within the NHS, wearing of masks is mandatory, handwashing and social distancing continue
  • Visitors are required to complete lateral flow tests prior to visiting, this remains a government requirement for visiting in the NHS
  • A maximum of 2 visitors at the patients bed side at any one time, the restriction on how many different visitors patients can see has been lifted (but remember all visitors are required to complete lateral flow tests)
  • Visiting is possible between 10am-1pm and 3pm-8pm
  • There is an expectation for a nominated person to coordinate who is visiting on which days
  • Visitors are recommended not to stay for longer than 4 hours
  • Visitors are no longer required to book in with the Hospice
  • A visitors signing in book is available on the front reception or at the nurses station when reception is closed
  • We continue to have no waiting areas inside the Hospice for relatives to meet
  • At this time we do not have a relatives bedroom to accommodate overnight stays, but we are working on reintroducing this once the room can be used for this purpose
  • Visitors are reminded that the MUST wear the fluid resistant masks provided in reception, refusal to wear a mask will result in visitors being turned away

Visiting Update - 27/9/21

Please click the link below to read our most up to date information for visitors to Cynthia Spencer Hospice

Information for all visitors from September 2021

Visiting Update - 26/7/21

Despite the lifting of national COVID restrictions from the 19th July, there will be no changes to the visiting restrictions outlined on the 1st May 2021.  These restrictions remain in place in accordance with the latest government guidelines on visiting in inpatient settings.  We ask for patients and visitors to abide by these rules and ask for your ongoing patience in these difficult times.  We are seeing an increase in relatives questioning our clinical teams about the restrictions, the team is following the guidance set out by Northamptonshire Healthcare Foundation Trust (NHFT).  These restrictions remain in place to reduce the risk of COVID transmission to patients, visitors and staff.  We will continue to monitor the latest guidance and update where necessary.

Visiting Update - 1/5/21

As from 1st May 2021, the hospice will now allow all patients to receive a visitor.  All visits must be booked with the clinical teams, and a time will be allocated for visitors to arrive.  The main changes are listed below:

Instructions to visitors:

  • Visiting is restricted to one visitor only due to a significant number of our patients and some visitors being in the highly vulnerable category (unless the visitor requires assistance themselves or is accompanying a child or young person at the discretion of the senior nurse on duty)
  • Where the patient or family would find benefit, the once a day visiting can be rotated between 2 people.  Therefore this allows one person to visit one day and the second person to visit the following.  Please limit the visiting to the same two people so as to limit the potential risks associated with multiple visitors.
  • Visiting is allowed by appointment only between 10.00 and 13.00 and between 15.00 and 20.00.  The period between 13.00 and 15.00 allows for protected quiet time for our patients
  • All visits must be booked through the Ward Administrators or Nurse in Charge.
  • For Cynthia Spencer Hospice call 01604 678031, or for Cransley Hospice, call 01536 452017
  • If a visitor is physically or emotionally frail, please speak to the nurse in charge and we will consider you being supported by a 2nd person.
  • Visitors will be required to provide their details for track and trace purposes
  • Visitors must not arrive  unannounced as visiting will be via an appointment system only
  • Visitors are advised that they must isolate for a period of no less than 10 days should they have tested positive with COVID
  • Visitors who have returned from countries where quarantine restrictions are required, must not visit the ward until the full quarantine period has been completed
  • Visitors are advised to be cautious if they  are deemed to be in the vulnerable or shielded group as per national guidance 
  • Visitors should avoid the use of public transport if possible
  • The frequency of visiting is a maximum of once per day
  • Any entry via the ward requires correct handwashing on entry and leaving 
  • The minimum PPE required is a face mask, on occasions this may require the addition of an apron and gloves.  
  • The visitor will be escorted to the appropriate place for the visit, and must not walk around the unit so as to minimise the risk of contact with other patients, visitors and staff
  • Social distancing of maintaining 2 metres distance  must be maintained
  • Young children or grandchildren can visit, but this must be specifically requested at the time of booking the appointment.  If a child or grandchild is visiting they must be accompanied by one adult.  There must not be more than 2 visitors with a patient at any one time;  Children over the age of 11 will be required to wear a face mask
  • Visitors are not able to stay in either Hospice and there are no catering facilities available at this time

Visitors MUST contact the Hospice and arrange a suitable time for their visit to commence.  Please do not turn up unannounced.  Visitors will be asked the following:

The visitor must not have displayed any COVID 19 symptoms in the last 14 days

  • Whether the visitor is willing to share a result from a recent COVID test (either the Lateral Flow or PCR test), please note this is purely to assist with the wards risk assessment
  • Where possible visitors will be encouraged not to use public transport to get to the Hospice
  • Visitors are reminded that they should continue support a cautious approach to contact with others outside of their home bubble during any period of visiting arrangement to the Hospice
  • Visitors should use caution when visiting if they themselves are deemed to be in the vulnerable or shielded groups as per national guidance
  • Visitors must follow expert national guidance on social distancing whilst on the ward
  • Visitors will be required to wear appropriate PPE, the minimum will be a surgical mask provided by the ward.
  • Visitors should wash hands regularly as well as before and after donning PPE

Supporting visits at end of life

Where the clinical team has identified that a patient is potentially nearing the end of their life, we are conscious this is an important time for patients and visitors alike to spend some valuable time together.  Unfortunately, we cannot return to completely open visiting due to the potential risks, but we will consider additional visiting allowances as explained below:

A maximum of 2 visitors are allowed in the room at the same time, social distancing must be maintained and appropriate PPE must be worn at all times. 

  • Visitors are recommended not to stay for longer than 4 hours; this allows visitors an opportunity to ensure they can head outside the Hospice to obtain food and drink and change their PPE

Where the patient or Next of Kin identifies how it would benefit the patient, the clinical team can consider accommodating up to 4 visitors.  There must only be a maximum of 2 visitors with the patient at any one time.  Visitors are therefore able to rotate visiting with 2 in the room and 2 outside the building.  We must ask that this is coordinated by a member of the family.  It is important to remember there should be no more than 2 visitors at any one time in the room with the patient.

Please note that visiting guidance is subject to change with very little notice which is dependent on government guidance, national or local lockdowns or infection control guidance.  We ask for your support and assistance should our visiting rules need to change.

Visiting update 09/11/20

Since the outbreak of COVID 19 – our Hospices have had to make the very difficult decision to limit visiting.  The Hospice is continuing to follow all UK Government and Public Health England guidelines and best practice to ensure everyone at the Hospice and in the community are protected as much as possible.  Our main priority will always be keeping our patients, their relatives, friends, our staff, volunteers and the wider community safe.

As England is presently in the second Lockdown, visiting restrictions remain in place and is for exceptional visiting only.  All patients can have a settling in visit on admission by one family member.  Thereafter visits are only permissible for patients in the last days of life.  All visitors must discuss with the clinical team prior to visiting their relative, and on arrival at the Hospice, you will be guided by a member of the clinical team as to what Personal Protective Equipment you will be required to wear.  When attending the hospice, please ensure you are wearing a suitable face covering as you enter the building.  Under no circumstances should visitors arrive at the Hospice unannounced.

For patients in the last days of life, visiting is limited to one person, but this is always with the agreement of the senior nurse on duty, so please discuss with the clinical team.  Unfortunately due to social distancing restrictions and limited space in the Hospice, we cannot accommodate family congregating in the building.  Please be mindful of the weather as should there be more than the single visitor with the patient, you will be asked to wait outside in your vehicle. 

We will support contact between patient and family members virtually through the use of social media, and there will be regular updates from the clinical team provided to the next of kin.

We appreciate this is very difficult for patients and their families but these restrictions are in place to protect patients and staff from the consequence of COVID.

Outpatients appointments and visiting in the patient's home

At the present time, all services have been reinstated following the ending of the first lockdown.  All patients have been contacted and services are returning to a form of normality.  All patient appointments at the Hospice are planned and appropriate information is provided either verbally or by letter prior to the patient attending.  Under no circumstances should patients attend for an appointment unannounced.  When attending appointments, all patients and anyone supporting the patient will be required to wear a suitable face covering, which should cover the mouth, nose and under the chin.  Anyone planning to see a patient in their own home, will be contacted and questions about COVID risk will be asked.  All staff will be wearing the appropriate PPE when they attend the home visit.  Wherever possible to ensure the safety of our patients, virtual appointments or follow ups will be agreed with the patient where this is possible.


During the COVID-19 emergency and beyond, the safety and wellbeing of our employees, our supporters and our community remains at the heart of our decision making process here at Cynthia Spencer Hospice Charity.

In order to protect our employees and supporters, and ensure our charity can remain open, we have adapted our ways of working, and have been working with Peninsula to develop guidance for our employees, supporters and other stakeholders. 

We continue to follow the latest official guidance and carefully monitor the COVID-19 situation.

Staying safe during COVID19

If anyone has concerns about our safe working arrangements, please raise it with the line manager if you are one of our employees or email

Our COVID-19 Risk Assessment

In line with sound Health and Safety practices we have undertaken a COVID-19 risk assessment, taking into account how we operate whilst continuing to maintain the safety and well-being of our employees, supporters, suppliers and others involved in our day-to-day activities. Our assessment for our Donation Station and Fundraising office is available here and will be reviewed on a regular basis in light of new guidance and any feedback from relevant stakeholders.

Advice for visitors to Cynthia Spencer Hospice

26th March 2020 - In response to the continuing crisis with the Covid-19 outbreak, Northamptonshire Healthcare Foundation Trust have had to put additional measures in place affecting visiting to protect our patients:

Visiting update 26 mar

For those patients who are in the last days of life, we will review this policy on a daily basis however we must emphasise a maximium of one visitor will be allowed at the bedside at any one time and we ask families to ensure they adhere to this. 

If you are visiting the hospice, we please ask you to adhere to the following:

  • All communal areas in the hospice are out of bounds and we ask relatives not to congregate inside the unit
  • Please ensure you maintain the distance of 2 metres from each other and you frequently wash your hands
  • According to latest guidance children under 12 are not allowed to visit

Please click this link for ways you can Keep in touch with your loved one virtually


Advice to patients 

Northamptonshire Healthcare Foundation Trust also advise that patients receiving care from the following services will be contacted individually to explore future arrangements. :

  • Lymphoedema 
  • Wellbeing  
  • Community team 
  • Medical outpatients

Patients can still contact the service and someone will call them back and discuss their symptoms with them. 

Advice to fundraisers and donors

On behalf of the hospice and fundraising teams could we please ask fundraisers and donors to refrain from arriving at the hospice unannounced. Please contact the fundraising team on 01604 973340 or email in order to safely arrange handover of fundraising monies.