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Visiting hours restricted at hospital

PUBLISHED: 17:02 13 October 2008 | UPDATED: 12:01 03 July 2010

VISITING to three wards at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital is being restricted in a bid to help combat a seasonal vomiting virus.

The Norovirus stomach bug causes nausea and diarrhoea and is very easily spread from person to person.

VISITING to three wards at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital is being restricted in a bid to help combat a seasonal vomiting virus.

The Norovirus stomach bug causes nausea and diarrhoea and is very easily spread from person to person. The spread of infection is easiest in places where group of people are in close proximity for reasonable amounts of time such as residential homes, schools, hospitals and workplaces.

The virus lasts around two days and no treatment is required, however, even after the symptoms have cleared up people may still carry the virus and infect others up to three days after their own symptoms have stopped.

Norovirus is currently affecting around five patients across three wards at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. People are being asked not to visit any of the affected wards unless absolutely necessary. The visiting restrictions for affected wards will be reviewed daily. The wards concerned are Heydon Ward, Holt Ward and Denton Ward.

Dr Judith Richards, director of infection prevention and control at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, said: “We want to protect our patients by restricting the chances of people spreading this infection. For this reason, regrettably, we are asking that people do not visit patients in the three affected wards, unless absolutely necessary. It's very important that people who have had the virus, or been in contact with someone who has had it, take precautions to avoid spreading it. That means not going back to work or school until two days after the symptoms have stopped.

“People should also avoid visiting places like hospitals and residential homes if they have had the bug or been in contact with it over the past two days. Alcohol gel is effective against bacteria but not all viruses, therefore we are recommend that, as a matter of routine, all visitors should also wash their hands with hot water and soap when visiting our wards, and we would be very grateful if more visitors could follow that guidance.”

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