Noble’s Hospital has closed two wards to new admissions.
Ward 8 has confirmed norovirus and Ward 5 is closed as a precaution with a suspected viral gastroenteritis outbreak.
The hospital has not introduced a blanket ban on visiting, but is urging the public not to visit the hospital unless absolutely necessary and not to bring in children aged under 12 years to visit anyone in the hospital.
Margaret Knight, lead nurse for infection prevention and control, said: ’It is that time of year where we see the Norovirus and other stomach bugs circulating in the community and our advice is to wash your hands as a matter of routine with hot, soapy water.’
She added: ’During norovirus outbreaks we ask people to wash their hands instead of using hand sanitiser. To keep norovirus out of hospitals, it is important that people do not visit patients if they have been ill with a stomach bug in the previous three days or in close contact with someone who has had sickness or diarrhoea.”
The government says the closure of these two wards is resulting in significant pressure on the remaining number of beds available within the hospital, with very few beds available currently to accommodate emergency and elective admissions.
Patients suffering from diarrhoea and vomiting are asked to avoid A & E unless absolutely necessary.
If it all possible, they should manage symptoms at home by drinking plenty of fluids and taking an anti-diarrhoea medication; or contact their GP or MEDS out of hours by telephone if they have concerns.
Patients who are scheduled for elective surgery over the coming days may be cancelled due to lack of available surgical beds. Patients will be notified if their operation is cancelled.