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UPDATE: all non-urgent operations postponed; non-essential visitors asked to stay away

All non-urgent operations have been postponed, and all non-essential visitors should stay away Credit: ITV Border

The North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust has released an update regarding the norovirus outbreak at the Cumberland Infirmary.

All non-urgent operations have been postponed this week.

The trust has also issued a further appeal for all visitors to stay at home if they, or a member of their family, has had vomiting, diarrhoea, or 'flu-like' symptoms in the last two days.

All non-essential visitors are asked to stay away from the hospital, and visitors are limited to two per bed and next of kin only.

According to the Trust, the number of patients affected by the virus remains high and it is continuing to circulate widely in the community.

Visitors with flu-like symptoms reminded to stay way

North Cumbria University Hospital NHS Trust has thanked the public for helping to keep the outbreak of norovirus at the Cumberland Infirmary to a minimum.

"We would like to thank the community for taking on board our request only to visit patients if absolutely necessary."

– Gail Naylor, director of nursing and midwifery at theNorth Cumbria University Hospitals Trust

The number of patients showing symptoms of norovirus has gone down since last week, though a significant number are still affected.

The Trust is now asking people exhibiting flu-like symptoms to avoid visiting.

"If you have had vomiting or diarrhoea yourself, please stay away until you have been symptom-free for at least two days."

– Gail Naylor, director of nursing and midwifery at theNorth Cumbria University Hospitals Trust

It is also reminding people that those who feel they need to visit will have to follow strict hand-washing guidelines, and that no more than two visitors should visit each patient at any one time.

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Outpatients should still attend appointments

The North Cumbria University Hospital Trust has stressed that outpatients should still attend appointments at the Cumberland Infirmary.

This morning the hospital asked all but essential visitors to stay away due to an outbreak of norovirus.

However outpatients have been advised to continue as normal as only ward areas are affected.

Norovirus outbreak at Cumberland Infirmary

All but essential visitors are being asked to stay away from the Cumberland Infirmary Credit: ITV Border

"All but essential visitors" have been asked to stay away from the Cumberland Infirmary after an outbreak of norovirus.

North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS is appealing to the public to help minimise the outbreak by avoiding visiting if possible.

Norovirus, also known as the winter vomiting bug, has been circulating widely in the community this winter and a significant number of patients have already been affected, according to the Trust.

"We currently have a significant number of beds affected by norovirus at the Cumberland Infirmary, so we are appealing to the public for their help in minimising the impact of this outbreak."

– Gail Naylor, director of nursing and midwifery at the North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust

Those who feel visiting is necessary will be asked to follow strict hand washing protocol, and to seek advice from the staff on the ward on how best to minimise the risk of infection.

Click here to find out more about norovirus.

Norovirus 3 month outbreak a 'concern'

Concerns about a three month outbreak of a sickness bug at the Borders General Hospital have been raised in the Scottish Parliament.

Norovirus has lead to the closure of one ward and restrictions on another.

MSP Christine Grahame says it is taking too long to resolve the issue and raised the issue during First Minister's Questions. First Minister Alex Salmond said he would ask the Scottish Health Secretary to look into it.

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Sickness bug strikes at Borders hospital

A ward at a hospital in the Scottish Borders is closed to admissions because of an outbreak of the winter sickness bug.

In addition to ward 12 being closed at Borders General Hospital, one bay in Ward 10 is also shut.

Health experts say the the Norovirus has been sweeping across Scotland recently.

Anyone who suspects they may have the symptoms, which include sickness and diarrhoea, is advised not to visit anyone at the hospital to prevent its spread.

Norovirus ward to reopen at Borders General

Borders General hospital will reopen the ward closed due to an outbreak of the winter vomiting bug norovirus this evening.

Ward 10, the Department of Medicine for the Elderly, will once against be open to visitors.

Two bays in Ward 12 and one bay in Ward 4 remain closed due to norovirus symptoms.

"Visitors remain strongly discouraged at this time and the general advice is to stay away from the hospital if you or anyone in your family has experienced symptoms of diarrhoea and/or vomiting in the past 48 hours.

"This advice applies especially to children. If you are visiting please limit numbers to two visitors per patient."

– Spokesperson for Borders General

Norovirus: All you need to know

Norovirus or ‘winter vomiting bug’ is one of the commonest causes of diarrhoea and vomiting illness.

The virus spreads through communities just like the flu does. It is very infectious and spreads quickly between people.

Symptoms include:

  • diarrhoea and/or vomiting lasting for 12-72 hours
  • headache
  • fever
  • muscle aches

You should avoid going to hospital or any other healthcare facility if you or other members of your family have had any symptoms in the past 48 hours.

Anyone can get the infection and it can be serious in the very young, frail or older people who are vulnerable to the effects of dehydration.

Treatment requires drinking lots of fluids and getting plenty rest so your body can fight the infection.

For more information about Norovirus visit the NHS website.

If you are worried about the virus, you should call NHS 24, your local health clinic or GP.

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