VISITING hours at Craigavon Area Hospital are to be reduced in an effort to reduce infections such as MRSA.
Health Minister Michael McGimpsey launched the initiative at Craigavon Area Hospital on Friday. Newry's Daisy Hill Hospital will also be affected.
The number of visitors admitted to see each patient is also to be restricted.
The trust hopes the policy will reduce the number of infections, particularly those caused by MRSA and C-Difficile.
Mr McGimpsey said: "Visitors to hospitals, as well as staff, play a vital role in combating infections.
"I would ask all visitors to familiarise themselves with the policy and follow basic hygiene measures such as washing their hands upon entering and leaving wards."
The health minister said it was crucial to strike a balance between the rights of patients and the need to speed recovery times.