Arrowe Park Hospital on Merseyside bans visitors
A hospital on Merseyside has suspended visiting until further notice to try to reduce the risk of patients and staff catching colds or flu.
The visiting ban at Arrowe Park Hospital on the Wirral, came into effect at 1600 GMT.
Critically ill patients may be allowed visitors, at the discretion of the ward manager.
There are also restrictions at the Wirral Women and Children's Hospital, on the same site.
People wanting to visit relatives there should call wards to check their position.
Tina Long, director of nursing and midwifery, said: "We are asking visitors to please bear with us at this time and not to come to the hospital to visit friends or family members unless they are very seriously ill.
"This temporary suspension of visiting will help us to concentrate on looking after those patients who need to be in hospital.
"We will of course lift this restriction as soon as we can."
People wanting to give items to patients, such as nightwear, cards or reading material, should leave them at the hospital's main reception.
Ms Long added: "On behalf of the trust, I apologise for any inconvenience that these temporary measures may cause to visitors and patients but we will lift the restriction as soon as possible."