West Herts Hospitals GP Extranet


Inpatient Guide - On the ward

Each ward has its own routine and ward clerks and housekeepers on most wards are there to advise and help you during your stay. However, there is general information that would apply whichever hospital or ward you are going to be a patient in:

Staff identification

All hospital staff wear identification which shows their name, position and photograph. This is normally in the form of a plastic badge either clipped onto clothing or worn around the neck.


West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust operates a No Smoking Policy. » View the Trust's Smoke Free policy

Telephone calls

A telephone trolley service for patients is situated on every ward.

The ward telephone is in constant use by the staff for the care of patients and will not be available for patients to receive incoming or make outgoing calls.

Nursing and midwifery staff would appreciate it if you could nominate one relative, carer or friend to telephone the ward between the hours of 10am to 12pm to find out how you are and to pass the news on to others.

Mobile Phones

Mobile phones emit signals that will interfere with medical equipment and may cause harm to other patients. We therefore ask that all mobile phones be switched off in all ward and clinic areas of the hospital.

Mobile phones may be used outside of the hospital.


Meal times are generally as follows:
Breakfast: 7.30am to 8.30pm
Lunch: 12pm to 1pm
Supper: 5.45pm to 6.30pm

Please advise the ward staff on admission if you have any dietary or cultural requirements.

Special diets available on the menu are diabetic, soft, puree, higher energy, higher protein and healthy eating choices. There is also provision for Kosher, Halal, Afro-Caribbean, vegan and vegetarian diets.

Please also advise the nursing and midwifery staff if you require a gluten free diet or if you suffer from a nut allergy, as the catering department will prepare your food so that it does not contain wheat, gluten, nuts or nut products.

Personal Laundry

There are no facilities available within the Trust for personal laundry. Please ask your visitors to take any laundry home for you. For further advice please talk to the ward housekeepers.

Postal Services

Any incoming mail being sent to you should be addressed clearly giving your full name and ward. Post is collected from and delivered to the mailroom once a day by the ward staff. Should you require postage stamps, they can be purchased from the hospital shop.

Please ensure when leaving the hospital that the ward staff have a forwarding address for your mail to be sent to.


Most wards have a colour television in the day room. If you wish to bring in your own television please inform the ward staff. Earpieces for these are essential. Televisions can be hired, for a small fee. Please ask ward staff for details.


Housekeepers have been appointed across the four hospital sites. The role of the housekeeper includes serving food to patients, making sure that patients and their relatives are comfortable, and the ward environment is kept clean, tidy and welcoming for patients and visitors.

Modern Matrons

There are now Modern Matrons in the Trust, within Surgery, Medicine, Elderly Care, Gynaecology, Delivery Suite, Community Midwifery, Ante Natal and Post Natal Care, Special Care Baby Unit, Cancer Services and Burns and Plastics. They continue to be highly visible (Modern Matrons uniforms). Please ask ward staff if you would like to speak to the Matron responsible for your area.

Uniforms for Nursing, Midwifery and Support Staff The Trust's aim is to promote a professional image for all of its Nursing, Midwifery and support staff. This will help patients/visitors to easily identify who the members of the team are by their uniforms. (Please see notice boards for examples of the different uniforms).

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