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Norovirus closes a fourth ward at Weston General

Fourth ward closes at Weston General Hospital due to an outbreak of norovirus Credit: ITV West Country

A fourth ward has been closed at Weston General Hospital due to an outbreak of norovirus.

Cheddar ward has been closed because of another outbreak of the vomiting bug.

Three wards were closed earlier this week, but Kewstoke was reopened on Friday. Uphill and Berrow remain closed.

Restrictions are in place and visitors have been asked to stay away unless absolutely necessary.

Health Secretary acknowledges 'teething problems' at Southmead

Southmead Hospital has third worst record in the country for dealing with patients in A&E Credit: Ben Birchall/PA

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt has acknowledged "teething problems" at the new Southmead hospital in Bristol, but says staff are working "incredibly hard" to overcome them.

He was responding to a question Bristol East Labour MP Kerry McCarthy about the fact that Southmead has the third worst record in the country for dealing with Accident and Emergency cases.

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Bristol's new mobile 'drunk tank' a first for the UK

A mobile treatment centre for people affected by alcohol after a night out opens in Bristol today.

Coinciding with the busy festive period, the state-of-the-art, 65-foot-long vehicle is the first of its kind in the country.

Paramedics will be able to treat people inside, reducing the pressure on hospital A&E departments.

A trial of the scheme in the city last December was praised for easing the strain on the emergency services.

Ken Wenman, Chief Executive of South Western Ambulance Service, expects the centre to have its hands full over Christmas.

Weston General experiencing 'severe norovirus outbreak'

Weston General Hospital experiencing severe norovirus outbreak Credit: ITV West Country

Three wards at Weston General are closed to admission as the hospital experiences a severe Norovirus outbreak.

Weston General Hospital is asking people to only come to the hospital if absolutely necessary. Otherwise known as the ‘winter vomiting bug’, Norovirus is highly infectious and easily passed from person to person.

Norovirus is extremely infectious. It is bought into the hospital from the community and so people coming into the hospital carrying the bug can easily transmit it to our patients. This is why we are urging people only to come here if their visit is absolutely essential. We have also put a number of firm restrictions in place.

– Chris Perry, Director of Nursing

The hospital has put firm restrictions in place, that they expect to remain until 21st December:

  • Only people who have an essential visit (people with appointments or needing emergency care) should come to the hospital.
  • Only the same two visitors are allowed to see a patient in any one session.
  • Children under 12 will not be allowed to visit without the express permission of the nurse in charge.
  • Do not come to the hospital if you are feeling unwell with sickness, diarrhoea, fever, sore throat or flu in the last 48 hours.
  • While in the hospital maintain good hand hygiene. Clean hands with alcohol hand rub or soap and water before entering the ward to reduce bringing infections into the hospital.

We have put these restrictions in place with the hope that we can clear this outbreak – the last thing we want to do is start restricting visiting for patients who have to spend Christmas in hospital. This is why we really need the public to help us.

Previously we have restricted visiting hours but we found this has a negative impact on discharging patients as we find it more difficult to liaise with the family. Therefore for the time being, visiting hours remain the same.

– Chris Perry, Director of Nursing

The three wards closed are Uphill, Berrow and Kewstoke. Specific wards with any current outbreaks are clearly indicated by banner signs.

Weston Hospital warn patients to expect delays in A&E

Weston General warn patients to expect delays Credit: ITV West Country

Weston General Hospital have tweeted to warn patients to expect delays in A & E this morning.

The hospital say that this morning has been exceptionally busy. It is appealing for people not to come to A & E unless absolutely necessary.

Staff at Weston General are currently holding a meeting about the shortage of beds. Three wards at the hospital are currently closed due to norovirus outbreaks.

Major incident declared in Gloucestershire hospitals

A major incident was declared in Gloucestershire yesterday owing to a lack of hospital beds.

51 patients needed beds at the Gloucestershire Royal Hospital and Cheltenham General Hospital.

The shortage was revealed today during a crisis meeting between health care providers across Gloucestershire. They met to discuss claims over “bed-blocking” patients who prevent others from being admitted.

A combination of factors have been blamed for “bed-blocking”, including administration changes to social services, a lack of suitable home-care packages and issues with transferring patients to community hospitals.

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Watch: Maxine Cowlin's story

A young woman from Somerset is about to spend her first healthy Christmas in years after receiving a liver transplant.

Maxine Cowlin from Bridgwater was just 17 when she was diagnosed with a rare type of liver disease. A transplant transformed her life, and now she's keen to encourage more people to be organ donors.

Watch her touching story below:

  1. West Country (W)

NHS Christmas appeal for more organ donors

Maxine Cowlin wants to thank her donor's family

The NHS are appealing for more people to join the organ donation register this Christmas.

There are 570 people in the South West waiting for an organ donation. Maxine Cowlin from Bridgwater is backing the campaign because she knows what that fees like.

Maxine was diagnosed with a rare liver disease when she was just 17, and had a transplant in October. She says her Christmas wish is that the family of her donor knew how thankful she was.

NHS Christmas appeal for more organ donors

Maxine Cowlin wants to thank her donor's family

The NHS are appealing for more people to join the organ donation register this Christmas.

There are 570 people in the South West waiting for an organ donation. Maxine Cowlin from Bridgwater is backing the campaign because she knows what that fees like.

Maxine was diagnosed with a rare liver disease when she was just 17, and had a transplant in October. She says her Christmas wish is that the family of her donor knew how thankful she was.

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