Visiting restrictions lifted for some wards but Royal Bolton Hospital still urges public to ‘do the right thing’ and stay away if they have the diarrhoea and vomiting bug.
The common sickness and diarrhoea bug, norovirus, is circulating in the community. Bolton NHS Foundation Trust is urging the public to do the right thing and not visit their loved ones in hospital if they have had symptoms.
For most people, norovirus is an unpleasant stomach bug that lasts a couple of days. For vulnerable patients who have compromised immunity or the very young and the very old, it can be harmful which is why we have a tough approach to tackling it.
Last week, in the interests of patients, the Trust temporarily restricted visiting on eight wards.
Today (Monday 31st December), restrictions remain in place until further notice on wards B1, C3, D3 and D4.
Richard Catlin, Assistant Director of Infection Prevention and Control, said: “The situation has improved so we are able to reinstate visiting to most wards. However we are still restricting visiting temporarily on four wards in the best interests of our patients. And we ask all visitors not to come into the hospital if they have had symptoms of norovirus, such as sickness and diarrhoea, within the last 48 hours. People are also urged not to come into our Emergency Department if they have had norovirus symptoms unless it is a genuine emergency.
“Norovirus is something we take extremely seriously. It is something that has the potential to spread very rapidly and the situation can change from one day to the next.
“Admission staff are vigilant to the signs and symptoms of norovirus so we can isolate patients immediately to prevent further infections. Staff in wards and departments also look out for the signs and symptoms so that patients can be identified and managed as soon as possible.
“It is with regret that we have had to restrict visiting on a number of our wards due to norovirus. This is not a decision we take lightly but is always in the best interests of our patients. We are asking people to please bear with us and understand that the welfare of our patients is paramount.”
Norovirus symptoms include a sudden onset of vomiting and/or diarrhoea. Some people may have a temperature, headache and stomach cramps.
People are advised to follow these simple steps to help:
Take plenty of fluids
Wash your hands regularly with soap and water
Keep yourself away from others – especially from GP surgeries or hospitals
If your symptoms continue for more than two days seek advice from NHS 111 by calling 111 on your phone or visit the NHS website for further information.
For non-emergencies, people can contact NHS 111 for further advice by calling 111.