Staying safe at GOSH and outside the hospital

1 Jun 2020, 9:58 a.m.

As we start to reopen some of our clinical services, we’re looking forward to welcoming you back into the hospital.

When you arrive, you may notice that things look a bit different to your previous visit. These extra safety measures – from social distancing starfish to the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) – have been put in place to protect everyone at GOSH.

We know that for some children and young people, (and adults!), it can be tricky to remember all the important steps to follow. That’s why we've created The Stay Safe Guide for Little Octopuses -- a fun and accessible video with four easy steps children and young people can follow to stay safe.

And, for all our patient and family information on the pandemic, you can access our Coronavirus (COVID-19) information hub.

Stay safe with Otto the octopus

Say hello to Otto, the little octopus. Like all of us, he’s found things a little difficult lately, but he’s learning that there’s lots of things he can do to protect himself and others. Watch Otto’s video to learn four easy steps for staying safe during COVID-19, whether you’re at the shops or visiting GOSH.

Otto’s four steps

1. Keep a safe distance

Stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your family. 

At GOSH, friendly starfish floor stickers are helping visitors keep a safe distance from others. As mums, dads and carers may be better at judging safe distances, they should encourage their little octopuses to follow their lead. You might notice our marine friends encouraging you to walk on the left-hand side and keep a safe distance in our lifts. Please wait for empty lifts where you can.

2. Try not to touch your face

Some dirt you can see, but some germs are so tiny you can’t see or feel them. Try not to touch your face to stop them spreading. 

Our eyes, nose and mouth are key gateways for germs and viruses to enter our bodies. Sometimes we touch our faces without noticing, so this can be tricky, especially for Otto who has eight arms! Try crossing your arms or putting your hands in your pockets when it’s safe to do so. 

3. Keep good hand hygiene

Regularly wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser. 

Don’t forget to scrub every bit of your tentacles – that’s thumbs and fingertips for you! Here’s a helpful handwashing video to make sure you don’t miss any spots. 

4. Use your mask properly

You (and your child if they can) will be asked to wear a mask during your visit. You’ll find the masks at the hand sanitising station as you walk into the main reception, and our friendly volunteers will show you how to put your mask on and wear it.

With only two hands (and not 8 tentacles!), it can be tricky to remove your mask safely. The handy loops mean you can take it off without touching the front, where germs may be. When you remove the mask, throw it away in an orange clinical bin before washing or sanitising your hands.

To help reduce the spread of infection, please do not take your mask home.

More information about staying safe

As well as our Stay Safe Guide for Little Octopuses, families and carers can find the latest COVID-19 news, information and resources in our Coronavirus (COVID-19) information hub.

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) – information for children, young people and families

We understand that you might be worried about coronavirus – also known as COVID-19 – particularly if your child has a long-term health condition. This information sheet from Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) sets out our advice and the action we are tak