Norovirus causes hospital ward closure

West Suffolk Hospital has been forced to close one of its wards to new admissions after patients showed symptoms of the winter vomiting bug, norovirus.

The hospital in Bury St Edmunds has shut ward F7 today after around 10 patients showed symptoms of the highly contagious diarrhoea and sickness virus.

Visitors are urged to take extra care to wash their hands with soap and water both on arrival and when leaving the hospital, while anyone who has shown symptoms of the virus has been asked to stay away.

Nichole Day, executive chief nurse at the hospital, said: “Norovirus is very infectious and every year there are cases in the community that transfer to the hospital.

“Because the virus has an incubation period of several days, people are often unaware that they are carrying it until after they have passed it on.

“We would advise anyone who has had diarrhoea or vomiting to stay away from the hospital for at least 72 hours after they have recovered, even if they feel better.

“Otherwise they run the risk of unknowingly passing the highly contagious illness on to someone who is already sick.”