Our Emergency Department in Dublin will be closed on Saturday 25th June. The service will be available again from Monday 27th at 8am. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding.

Visitor Guidelines

Visitors play an important part in the healing process. However, due to COVID-19, we unfortunately cannot accommodate social visits to our patients at this time. 

The health and safety of our patients, visitors and staff remains a top priority at Mater Private Network. With this in mind, we have revised our policy for visitors to the hospital, in line with the latest COVID-19 guidelines. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

The Infection Prevention and Control team at Mater Private Network aims to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission among staff and patients in all departments in the hospital or off site. 

The number of positive COVID-19 cases in the community remains high; therefore, we all must be vigilant and compliant with the infection prevention and control protocols put in place to reduce these risks. To date, we have managed to combat COVID-19 and all other infections through a multi-factorial approach including rigorous screening of patients and limiting access only to essential service providers and patient visitors. All visitors must be screened at the department level using COVID-19 screening questionnaire.

All visitors to Mater Private Network must adhere to directions on essential infection prevention and control practices including maintaining social distance (in so far as appropriate to their purpose), mask use, respiratory hygiene, cough etiquette and hand hygiene.

Please note: Mater Private Network Dublin might ask visitors for their EU Digital COVID Certificate or HSE COVID-19 Vaccination Record or other proof of immunity, with exemptions on compassionate grounds, if necessary.


  • A risk assessment should take account of the overall care needs, rights and wishes of patients, the risk of severe COVID-19 for that patient, and the current incidence of COVID-19 in the surrounding community, to manage risks associated with visiting.
  • The ward Clinical Nurse Manager(s) must be informed in advance if visitors are expected. 
  • All visitors must be screened by relevant department staff every time they come to visit. 
  • All visitors must adhere at all times to the Mater Private Network infection prevention and control policies.
  • Visitors should not interact socially with other visitors, or with patients other than the person they have come to visit. 
  • Visits should generally occur away from mealtimes.
  • Visits should only occur in the bed space of the patient they have come to visit.
  • Social visits: unfortunately, due to the number of positive COVID-19 cases in the community, we cannot accommodate social visits at this time. Thank you for your understanding.
  • Critical circumstances or compassionate grounds*: two visitors are allowed at a time with no limit on duration or frequency of visits.
  • Routine visit/patient’s request in the absence of critical circumstances or compassionate grounds: 

Dublin:

If the patient's length of stay is less than five days, to protect patients and staff it is beneficial that social visits are avoided during their hospital stay. If the patient's length of stay is greater than five days, one designated person is allowed two routine visits per week (15 - 20 minutes duration each time).

Cork:

In light of the high number of COVID-19 cases in the community, no routine visiting is permitted in our hospitals at this time.  

  • Accompanying person (parent/guardian/carer) in children’s services: one accompanying person should be supported to be with a child during their hospital admission or other hospital attendance. Parents/Guardians/Carers may rotate the role of accompanying person if necessary.


*Critical and compassionate circumstances: 

  • Circumstances in which end of life is imminent.
  • Circumstances in which a patient is significantly distressed or disturbed and although unable to express the desire for a visit, there is reason to believe that a visit from a significant person may relieve distress. 
  • medically vulnerable patient.
  • When there is an exceptionally important life event for the patient (for example death of a spouse or birthday). 
  • When the visitor may not have another opportunity to visit for many months /years or at all (for example because they are leaving the country or are themselves approaching end of life). 
  • A person nominated by the patient expresses concern that a prolonged absence is causing upset or harm to a patient. 
  • Other circumstances in which the judgement of the medical or nursing staff, registered health or social care professional, spiritual advisor or advocate acting for that the patient, is that a visit is important for the person’s health or sense of well-being.

In line with national guidelines updated on 1/11/2021.

Wherever possible, only the patient should attend the appointment.

A nominated support person can only attend the appointment with the patient if they are medically vulnerable (e.g., patients with cognitive impairments or dementia, patients with severe mobility issues, legally blind/people with hearing difficulty, children under 18 years old), or for compassionate reasons such as disclosure of new news/ bad news that has significant impact on the life and health of patient.

"Since any person who accesses an acute hospital or similar setting may unintentionally introduce COVID-19, the number of people who access acute hospitals should be limited as much as is reasonably practical. Those patients who feel able to manage without being accompanied or visited during their time in hospital should be encouraged to do so, particularly if they are spending a short time in hospital."

For more information please see COVID-19 Guidance on Access to Acute Hospitals for Nominated Support Partners, Accompanying Persons, Visitors and External Service Providers V 1.4 09.02.2022 For Implementation by 21.02.2022

Hand Hygiene

We ask you to pay particular attention to our infection control advice when planning to visit our hospital. Hand hygiene is a hugely important factor in preventing and controlling the spread of infections. Please use the hand gels throughout the hospital before and after you come in contact with any patients.

Infection Control
  • If you have any infection, we would ask that you do not visit, particularly if you have flu, any vomiting or diarrhoea.
  • If you are ill (i.e. vomiting or diarrhoea) in any toilet in the hospital, please notify a member of staff so that the area can be disinfected. Even if it appears clean, disinfection will still be required.
  • Toilets in patient rooms are for PATIENT USE ONLY. There are toilets throughout the hospital and on every ward.
Flowers and Plants

Please note that flowers and plants are no longer permitted in any part of Mater Private Network’s hospital facilities due to infection control requirements. Bacteria can be carried in soil, water or even in the dust collected on plants and flowers.

If you are a visitor to the hospital, we would ask you to consider the following:

  • Please use hand hygiene facilities on entering and leaving the hospital
  • Do not visit the hospital if you have had diarrhoea or vomiting in the last 3 days
  • Do not visit if you feel unwell or if you think you may be an infection risk to others
  • Do not visit if you have taken alcohol or drugs
  • Please comply with visiting hours
  • Ensure children are supervised at all times
  • Do not bring infants to visit patients
  • Do not sit or lie on patient’s bed
  • Do not access un-authorised areas
  • Have consideration for other patients' needs
  • Nominate a family member as the main point of contact for sharing information regarding patient’s condition to other family members and friends.
Smoking

Our hospitals are non-smoking facilities. We ask you to respect non-smoking patients by remembering not to smoke under windows.

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Dublin

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Cork

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