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Visiting a loved one in isolation

HELLO I no every transplant unit will be very different but is there anyone that has visited some one in isolation in the manchester MRI unit who could advise on visiting how often, how long,how many can visit at any one time,my husband will be admitted soon and this will be a great worry to us all if we cannot have some contact Thank-you to any one who can help at all would be so appreciated.


  • Hello Popcorn28

    My name is Michelle I am an online community champion and a stem cell recipient. I'm here to support patients and families as best as possible before during and after their SCT.

    I was treated in London so cannot advice directly relating to Manchester hospitals but from my experience when I was in isolation I could only have one visitor and they had to put on a medical gown, gloves and masks. They could stay the same duration as any other visitor on the ward between the allocated visitng times. Which will vary depending on the hospital.

    There are lots of other people that can share their experience.

    Best wishes


  • Thank you Michelle I'm thinking if that's the same then that'll be great I suppose when he gets the go ahead I will ring the ward.Thankyou for your time regards Pauline

  • Hello Pauline, I haven't had my transplant yet but I was in Southampton Hospital for seven weeks having debulking chemotherapy prior to the admission for transplant. Southampton doesn't allow any visiting at all on the haematology/transplant ward and my husband and I were dreading it. However, we found that because we had no choice we just managed to get used to it - thank goodness for smartphones.

    I have to admit that I burst into tears when he arrived to collect me after seven weeks but we got through it. Now we are bracing ourselves for the next phase (which has been delayed because my donor caught Covid).

    Best wishes, Jennie

  • Hi Popcorn28.

    It's a long time since I had my transplant and mine was in Leicester so I can't give you any experience of Manchester, but my advice would be to speak to your husbands medical team and ask them to clarify. Precautions may differ from one unit to another, particularly with the current climate around Covid. They will be able to tell you about any restrictions including time limits and visiting precautions. They will probably advise you to stick to immediate family at least as you do not want a lot of different people visiting.

    For me, even on the bone marrow transplant unit, it was not total isolation. My wife and my sons could visit when they liked and for how long they liked, every day. I know other patients had partners who came in and spent the whole day with them each day. They had to gown up and wear gloves as a precaution but there was no restriction as far as visiting was concerned. They were asked not to visit if any of them had coughs or colds due to my immuno-suppressed condition, but other than that there was no restriction.

    I think most units will recognise the positive effect personal contact with immediate family will have on the well-being of the patient and total isolation would be (in my eyes) unusual these days. I started working life as a design engineer and one of my first projects was the design and construction of the unit I ended up being treated on. It was always designed with total isolation in mind with hatches to pass things into the room, but in reality, infection control practice has removed a lot of the isolation and contact with the patient is a lot less restricted.

    In the lead up to your husbands transplant he will be going through various pre-transplant checks and that gives you an opportunity to chat to the staff and ask them about visiting. Make a note of the questions you want to ask them before you go for the appointments and make sure you ask all of the questions you need to. The hospital will be used to this and will help you through the uncertainty.

    I hope this helps and that you get the reassurance you need from the medical team, and that even in the times of Covid you get to visit your husband during his transplant. If, for any reason, the hospital do impose no visiting, there are plenty of ways to keep in touch, through phone, skype, facetime, etc so make use of those. If you're unable to visit it is to protect your husband as he will be very vulnerable until his immune system starts to recover.

    Best wishes,


  • Thank you Steve for taking the time to answer as it stands at this time is the transplant is posponed due to donor related medical issues but hopefully with time he will be back on track he's already been in hospital since end of Feb and not been home since as all his bloods platelets white cells are not improving so he's had to remain in isolation which is very testing we are just hoping the transplant will help he is so positive and mentally strong its just such a long time to be away from us but of course needs must.

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