VISITING restrictions have been eased at Herefordshire hospitals to allow patients to see friends and family over Christmas.

Each patient at Wye Valley NHS Trust will be allowed to see two visitors on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.

Currently visiting is suspended to help prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Each visit can last up to 45 minutes and the two visitors can visit at the same time or separately between midday and 4pm on each of the days.

Arrangements will have to be agreed with the nurse in charge to ensure social distancing is maintained on the wards.

“Patients benefit hugely from having visitors and we’d like to thank friends and relatives of our patients for their understanding at the current time,” said Lucy Flanagan, chief nursing officer at the trust.

“This time of the year is very special and we’re pleased to be able to relax visiting arrangements on these three days. All we ask is that visits are agreed in advance with the nurse in charge to make sure any risk of transmission is kept to a minimum.”

Visiting arrangements on the children’s ward, in maternity and on the special care baby unit continue unchanged.

On the rare occasion that a ward needs to close, visiting will be suspended.