outbreak closes ward at Burnham-On-Sea hospital
bosses have said today (Monday, February 22nd) that the Norovirus
bug is to blame for an outbreak of sickness which has shut a ward
War Memorial Hospital.
learns one ward has been closed after five patients went down
with the Norovirus bug, which causes sicknesss and diarrhoea.
Community Health spokesman Paul Courtney told Burnham-On-Sea.com
on Monday: "One ward has been affected and closed to admissions
as a precautionary measure. We are holding patients there to try
and reduce the risk of them taking the bug to nursing homes and
monitoring the situation on a day-by-day basis and are not taking
in new patients until the illness has gone."
should be noted that Norovirus is a relatively common gastric
illness - not a hospital bug - that is found in schools, hotels
and other community places," added Mr Courtney.
also stressed that the hospital's outpatient services and minor
injuries unit are unaffected.
"There are a handful of patients recovering from symptoms
of the virus, however, as a precautionary measure, admissions
and discharges from the ward remain suspended until the hospitals
Matron and Infection Control staff are confident that there is
no risk of the illness being spread to others. The ward situation
is being reviewed on a daily basis."
"A more intensive cleaning regime is already operating on
the ward at Burnham Hospital. However, a deep clean
of the hospital ward will also be undertaken before any new inpatients
to the hospital are being reminded that they can play a vital
role in reducing the spread of this highly infectious gastric
illness by ensuring they maintain scrupulous personal hygiene
- always wash their hands after going to the toilet or before
handling food for others.
He added that it is important to stress that Noro Virus does not
originate from within the hospital. "The virus is a naturally
occurring virus in the environment and community and can be easily
spread from person to person. This most commonly occurs when people
with the virus fail to wash their hands after going to the toilet
or when handling food for others or vomit whilst in close proximity
Anyone visiting friends or relatives on the wards at Burnham Hospital
is reminded to follow several infection control measures:
* If visiting a friends or relative on an affected ward please
limit the numbers of people visiting to just one or two adults
at a time
* When entering or leaving the hospital and its wards always wash
your hands and use the anti-bacterial hand gels present at the
* If you are visiting a friend or relative on a ward do not then
go onto to visit a patient in another area of the hospital
* Do not bring young children onto the affected wards
* If visitors are themselves suffering with gastric illness or
diarrhoea they are asked not to visit the hospital at this time.