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Frequently asked questions

Please see some answers to common questions we have received during the COVID-19 pandemic. If your query is not covered, please use our live webchat facility.

Click on a question to see the answer.

Should I be attending my outpatient appointment?

If you have a scheduled appointment please attend as normal unless otherwise informed. If you are concerned about coming out of isolation due to being in a high risk group, you can speak with our telephone appointment centre on 01284 713713 who can postpone your appointment.

How can I cancel my appointment as I am currently self-isolating?

Please contact the telephone appointment centre for queries about your appointment on 01284 713713.

Will my appointment be changed to a phone or virtual appointment?

You may be invited to join a virtual clinic – meaning your appointment will take place over the phone or via videocall, rather than face-to-face. If your appointment is suitable for a virtual clinic, you will be contacted by your hospital team beforehand to arrange this.

I am trying to contact the ward to get an update. How can I get through to the ward?

Please refrain from contacting the ward you are trying to reach, and contact our helpline instead on 01284 712555. Available from 8am-8pm, 7 days a week, our staff will be able to provide updates on patients.

I have planned surgery that is booked in, will this still go ahead?

If you have not heard otherwise, your surgery is going ahead as planned. If you have any queries please contact the admissions team on 01284 712810.


What are the visiting times for the hospital?

We currently have visitor restrictions in place. Please see the visitor information here.

Are children allowed to visit relatives in hospital?

Anyone under the age of 16 is not allowed to visit the hospital at this time.

If I am showing symptoms of COVID-19, can I be tested at West Suffolk Hospital?

No. Please do not attend the hospital, if you have symptoms you should visit the NHS 111 website or call NHS 111 following the website assessment.

Is the café open for food and drinks?

Yes, the Courtyard Café is open from 9am-4pm Monday to Friday for takeaway only. We are only taking card payments (no cash). Please maintain 2m social distancing throughout.

Can I still access a taxi to get me home?

Yes, taxis will still be able to access the premises.


I have been called in for an urgent appointment and I don’t have childcare, can I bring my children with me?

Anyone under the age of 16 is not allowed to visit the hospital at this time.

Instead of cancelling my appointment can I postpone it?

Please contact the telephone appointment centre for queries about your appointment on 01284 713713.

Will I see my usual Doctor?

Please contact the telephone appointment centre for queries about your appointment on 01284 713713.

Will I be less of a priority to be treated because I don’t have COVID-19?

Every patient will be treated based on their clinical need and staff will continue to deliver care to all of our patients whilst dealing with COVID-19 cases. Staffing capacity and pressures are being closely monitored 24/7 during this unprecedented time.

If I require emergency treatment am I expected to attend the Emergency Department alone?

Please make every attempt to attend the hospital alone if required. Practice 2m social distancing throughout.


My appointment has been cancelled due to COVID-19 but I am anxious I have serious underlying issues, how long will it be until I can see a clinician?

All patients are being prioritised based on their clinical need and postponed appointments will be rescheduled or delivered in an alternative format as soon as possible. If you are particularly concerned please contact your GP via telephone or contact PALS on 01284 712555 who will try to help.