Glasgow & West Scotland

Third death among respiratory virus cases at Beatson Cancer Centre

Beatson Cancer Hospital Image copyright NHS GGC
Image caption Three patients who were treated at the Beatson Cancer Centre died after developing a respiratory virus

A third patient has died after developing a respiratory virus at Scotland's largest cancer hospital.

The patient was one of seven who were diagnosed with Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) following treatment at the Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said previously that RSV was a contributory factor in the deaths of the two others.

The health board has also identified an eighth case of infection in a patient who was discharged from the Beatson.

The patient who died had been giving cause for concern and was transferred from the Beatson earlier this week to the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital.

Dr Teresa Inkster, infection control doctor with NHS GGC, said: "Our thoughts and sympathies are with the family of the patient who has died.

"In addition, a further case has been identified that had been discharged from the hospital before testing began.

"This patient attended an outpatient appointment and was showing mild symptoms of this respiratory virus. The patient has been admitted to the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital as a precaution."

Image copyright PA
Image caption RSV can be spread through sneezing

Dr Inkster said two other patients with the virus were "recovering in isolation and in line with infection control procedures" and the ward at the centre of the cases at the Beatson was "now admitting new patients".

She added: "As a further measure we have contacted all patients who have been in the ward since the beginning of December which established there had been no other patients reporting symptoms."

When NHS GGC announced earlier this week that two Beatson patients with RSV had died, it said that one of them "had significant underlying health issues".

RSV was a contributory factor in the death but not the cause.

The other patient who died had been discharged from the Beatson after being assessed as clinically fit but their condition later deteriorated and they passed away in another hospital.

RSV is spread by tiny droplets and sneezing or by touching surfaces with the virus on it.

Symptoms in babies include difficulty breathing, high fever, nasal discharge, cough mucus, irritability or inactivity and refusal to feed.

The best way to control it is to use tissues when coughing and sneezing and washing hands regularly.

The incubation period for RSV is five to seven days and the illness usually lasts about a week.

People with concerns are advised to see a GP or ring NHS 24.

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