Information about open visiting

Somerset NHS Foundation Trust offers open visiting on our wards.

This means that those staying overnight on our wards (you may hear us refer to these patients as ‘inpatients’) can be visited by up to two visitors at any one time between 10am and 8pm, seven days a week.

Visiting hours for inpatients on our mental health wards are from 4pm to 8pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 8pm on weekends and bank holidays.

Visits by children on all our wards are by pre-arranged appointment only and flexibility will be offered where family and friends cannot visit within the timeframe set out above. Please speak to the relevant ward team to arrange.

We ask that you try to coordinate visits with other family and friends to ensure there are not too many people trying to visit one patient at the same time. If more than two people wish to visit at one time please contact the ward to arrange.

Please do not visit patients in our hospitals if you feel unwell with any viral infection such as a cold or sickness bug. If you have been sick or experienced diarrhoea, please wait 48 hours following the last episode before your hospital visit. Thank you for helping us to protects our patients and colleagues.


Please note that our maternity services operate different visiting times and these can be found on the Musgrove Park Hospital maternity wards, and Yeovil Hospital maternity wards hospital pages.

What can I do to help make my visit safe and enjoyable for the person I am visiting?

Be patient: Sometimes the patient you are visiting may be receiving treatment or care. If this is happening when you arrive we may ask you to wait outside the ward until the patient is ready to see you.

Help make mealtimes safe and enjoyable: If you visit during a mealtime and would like to help your relative or friend enjoy their meal, you are welcome to help them with their eating or drinking. If not, we may ask you to wait away from the bedside so members of our team have the space required to assist the patient.

Coordinate your visit with other visitors: We only have a limited amount of space on our wards and around each patient’s bed. If there are multiple people who would like to visit the patient please try and coordinate your visits with each other before you arrive so you all have the opportunity to visit; this will avoid you being turned away at the ward and will ensure the person you wish to visit gets the benefit and pleasure of seeing as many relatives and friends as possible.

Help us stop the spread of germs: Please wash your hands with alcohol gel or with soap and warm water as you enter and leave the ward.

Can more people visit if the patient I am visiting is receiving end of life care?

We know there are times when it is important for family and friends to be together to visit a patient, particularly if they are near the end of their life. In these situations we will do everything we can to accommodates a larger number of people during a visit. Please contact the ward directly to discuss.