KIDDERMINSTER Hospital is currently closed to visitors as an outbreak of norovirus continues to affect Worcestershire.
Members of the public are being asked to avoid visiting patients at Kidderminster, Worcestershire Royal and Alexandra hospitals, unless it is absolutely essential. Those who believe their visit is essential are advised to telephone the ward in advance for advice.
Limiting the number of people going into hospital wards "significantly reduces" the risk of spread of norovirus and helps keep the hospitals running efficiently, according to Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust.
Lindsey Webb, Chief Nursing Officer, said: “We would like to thank all of those people who, over the past few days, have heeded our advice and avoided visiting the hospitals. We would also like to thank those who have arrived and been turned away for their understanding of the situation.
"I am pleased to report that this extra vigilance does mean that the situation is improving and we will be reviewing the situation again next Monday. The latest visiting information is available on the front page of our website at worcsacute.nhs.uk.
“Norovirus is very common during the winter months. We would continue to ask anyone with any symptoms of norovirus infection, such as diarrhoea and/or vomiting to stay at home and not come to the hospital until they have been symptom free for at least 48 hours. For advice please telephone your GP or NHS 111 rather than risk transmitting the infection further.”
There is no specific treatment for norovirus apart from letting the illness run its course. While it is highly infectious there are simple infection control procedures to follow:
- Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration
- Wash hands thoroughly after using the toilet
- Food preparation for others should be avoided until 48 hours after symptoms have subsided
- Do not share towels and flannels
- Disinfect surfaces
Telephone your GP or NHS 111 for advice if the symptoms do not quickly subside or you have additional concerns.