Vomiting bug forces ward closed at Altnagelvin

A ward at Altnagelvin Hospital has been temporarily closed to admissions due to an increase of vomiting and diarrhoea among patients.

People are asked to avoid visiting the hospital if they are feeling unwell, particularly if they have diarrhoea and/or vomiting; have coughs, colds or flu-like symptoms; or have any infectious condition such as chickenpox or mumps.

Those who are visiting are asked to thoroughly wash their hands before and after visiting.

Visitors should visit only one patient whilst at the hospital, refrain from sitting on hospital beds and not move among patients and from ward to ward when visiting.

The increase in vomiting and diarrhoea has been caused by Norovirus, also known as the winter vomiting virus, which has been confirmed in a number of patients.

A hospital spokesman said: “This virus is an unpleasant illness, with most people getting better within a few days.”

A decision was made earlier this week that ward 42 be temporarily closed to new admissions.

The hospital plans to reopen the ward to admissions in the next few days.

The Trust’s Infection Prevention and Control team is continuing to provide advice.

Increased infection control measures have been taken.