Herefordshire residents with symptoms of Norovirus are being urged not to visit hospitals to help protect vulnerable and seriously ill patients.
Norovirus brought into hospital by visitors has recently caused the closure of several wards at hospitals in Herefordshire.
Lugg Ward at Hereford County Hospital closed to visitors yesterday afternoon, Monday April 11, and two wards at Ross Community Hospital remain closed to visitors due to cases of Norovirus.
Alison Johnson, consultant microbiologist at Wye Valley NHS Trust, said: “We are sending out a clear message to visitors not to attend hospitals in Herefordshire if they have symptoms of diarrhoea and/or vomiting.
“If your symptoms have stopped, you should still not visit hospital until you have been clear of symptoms for at least 48 hours.
“We are caring for vulnerable and seriously ill patients and we must ensure that they are protected, where possible, from viruses such as Norovirus.
“There are more Norovirus cases in the communities across the region than we would expect for this time of year, so we need everyone to remain vigilant and stay at home if you have these symptoms.
“Children and the elderly should avoid attending hospital for visiting unless it is essential and it has been checked with the ward. This is to protect them from becoming unwell with Norovirus and to protect our patients.”
Wye Valley NHS Trust wishes to thank all visitors for their understanding during this period and to emphasise that these restrictions are in place to protect our patients, as part of a zero tolerance approach to healthcare associated infections.
There are some simple steps that the public can take to help stop Norovirus spreading:
- Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and warm water, particularly after using the toilet, and before preparing food. If you’re in an NHS facility pay attention to hand hygiene notices such as using hand gel upon entering and leaving a ward.
- Disinfect any surfaces or objects that could be contaminated with a Norovirus. It is best to use a bleach-based household cleaner. Always follow the instructions on the cleaning product.
- Flush away any infected faeces or vomit in the toilet. You should also keep the surrounding toilet area clean and hygienic.
- Wash any clothing, or linens, which could have become contaminated with a Norovirus. Washing with hot, soapy water will help to ensure that the virus is killed.
Although people usually recover without treatment in 24-72 hours, it is important to stay away from work, school, college or any social gatherings until you have been free of symptoms for at least 48 hours.
Notes to Editors:
- Wye Valley NHS Trust is the provider health services across Herefordshire and beyond. The Trust exists to improve the wellbeing, independence and health of the people we serve. We are the leading provider of health care in Herefordshire.
- By working closely with our partners, we can make good our promise to deliver a quality of care we would want for ourselves, our families and our friends.
- With an estimated annual turnover of around £160 million, we employ around 2,700 plus staff. We aim to build new relationships between our staff, patients, service users and their carers with the wider community.For further information please contact:
For further information please contact:
John Burnett, Communication and Engagement Manager, Wye Valley NHS Trust: 01432 372928 or Fiona Gurney, Communications Officer 01432 355444 ext. 5105.