Southmead Hospital patients caught coronavirus from staff

A report confirmed at least six patients caught coronavirus while in the hospital.

A number of patients at a hospital in Bristol have contracted coronavirus after getting it from members of staff who caught it outside of work.

Dr Chris Burton, Medical Director at North Bristol NHS Trust, confirmed the outbreak but hopes the introduction of rapid testing for staff will bring the spread under control.

Speaking recently, Dr Burton said: "We've been managing a number of outbreaks."

He added: "An outbreak is defined as two cases in a particular area that are linked, and we have had to manage outbreaks on a number of wards and settings within the hospital estate."

Board papers from a meeting held on 26 November reveal the outbreaks at Southmead began in October after "several months with no hospital onset cases" of Covid-19.

Six patients caught the virus in hospital, it was confirmed, and four were suspected of contracting it there.

Dr Burton assured the board the hospital was "actively managing" the problem and insisted it's not just limited to Southmead.

"It's a problem in all hospitals," he added.

The report also said: "Transmission within ward bay areas has been a common theme and the learning included a review of the perspex screens between bed spaces which have been purchased for all bays."

The trust added it has reviewed guidance for patients on the wearing of face masks in bays and when staff enter single rooms.