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Hospitals in Kent have been struck down by a norovirus breakout and are urging visitors not to visit relatives unless “absolutely necessary”.
The Maidstone Hospital and the Queen Elizabeth Queen’s Mother Hospital in Margate are asking residents not to make their way to the hospitals unless in extreme circumstances.
Although, there are no norovirus problems at the William Harvey in Ashford and the Canterbury hospitals, they are still preventing visitors from getting into either hospital unless in an emergency. Visitors can continue to access the Tunbridge Wells Hospital, but to reduce the risk of infection are asking people to only visit patients if absolutely necessary.
Director of Infection Prevention and Control at the Trust, Dr Sara Mumford says: “Norovirus is a particular problem for hospitals because we are looking after already unwell people who may have reduced immunity and are susceptible to infection.”
“We will review the situation daily and let people know as soon as normal visiting hours can be resumed.”
What is the Norovirus?
The virus is an extremely common highly contagious, vomiting bug that affects people of all ages. Between 600,000 and 1 million people in the UK catch the norovirus every year.
Whilst there is no specific cure, it should only take a couple of days to get over the illness. Although unpleasant, it is not dangerous and most people make a full recovery.
Signs of the Norovirus:
- Stomach Cramps
- Aching Limbs
- Temperature (over 38C/100.4F)
If you do come down with norovirus:
- Do not visit the doctors as norovirus is extremely contagious and there is nothing the doctor can do.
- Drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration (especially for children and babies. Babies can still drink milk).
- Take paracetamol for any fever or aches and pains.