Lancashire

Royal Lancaster Infirmary hit by norovirus reopens wards

A Lancashire hospital has reopened four wards to visitors after its latest outbreak of norovirus.

The Royal Lancaster Infirmary closed wards 21, 34, 35, and 37 to visitors on Friday.

The hospital had to close all wards to visitors in December after 140 patients and 20 staff fell ill with bug.

The University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust is discouraging people from visiting patients who still have symptoms.

The Trust's medical director George Nasmyth said: "To ensure we do not see another outbreak of norovirus in the hospital, we continue to ask that people stay away if they have been sick or had diarrhoea in the last 72 hours or been in close contact with someone who has, unless they require emergency treatment.

"For everyone that does enter the hospital, we would still like them to ensure they wash their hands with soap and water before entering. Alcohol gel is not effective against norovirus."

Wards were also closed in February, May and November because of an outbreak of the sickness bug.

Norovirus causes vomiting, stomach cramps, fever and diarrhoea and it is easily spread from person to person.

Symptoms usually begin between 12 to 48 hours after a person becomes infected, with most healthy people making a recovery within one to three days.

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