Norovirus and Stomach Bugs

Norovirus, better known as the winter vomiting bug (although it can occur at any time of the year), is the most common stomach bug in the UK, affecting people of all ages. The virus, which is highly contagious, causes vomiting and diarrhoea.


Norovirus at the hospital

Bays 2 and 4 of Uphill ward and bay 3 of Sandford ward are closed due to confirmed Norovirus & visiting hours have been restricted at Weston General Hospital. As Norovirus is present in the wider community in North Somerset with many people affected by this very unpleasant bug, we are urging visitors to remain vigilant to try and prevent further outbreaks. 

 

To find out more about Norovirus and how you can protect yourselves and your community, please watch our public awareness video below. 

 

Please DO NOT visit any of the hospital wards or departments if you have had symptoms of diarrhoea or vomiting in the last 48 hours.

All visitors to Weston General are asked to: 

Not visit the hospital if you are feeling unwell with sickness, diarrhoea, fever, sore throat or flu.

Clean hands with alcohol hand-gel or soap and water before entering the ward to reduce bringing infections into the hospital.

Wash hands with soap and water after visiting a ward, as alcohol hand-gel will not kill the virus.Not bring children under 11 to the hospital.Not sit on patients’ beds.

Check with staff before bringing in food items.Only bring in essentials for patients as clutter on or around the bed makes it difficult to clean.

Use public toilets, not patient toilets and remember to wash your hands.

Any patients presenting to the hospital with suspected Norovirus must make themselves known immediately to staff.

What to do if you have Norovirus?

Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration.

Take paracetamol for any fever or aches and pains.

If you feel like eating, eat foods that are easy to digest.

Stay at home and don't go to the doctor, because norovirus is contagious and there is nothing the doctor can do while you have it. However, you may wish to visit your GP if your symptoms last longer than a few days.

Extra care should be taken to prevent babies and small children who are vomiting or have diarrhoea from dehydrating, by giving them plenty of fluids. Don't worry if you are pregnant and you get norovirus: there is no risk to your unborn child.

How to stop it spreading

The virus is easily spread by contact with an infected person, especially through their hands. You can also catch it through contaminated food or drink or by touching contaminated surfaces or objects.

The following measures should help prevent the virus from spreading further:

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Do not share towels and flannels.
  • Disinfect any surfaces that an infected person has touched.

Norovirus in the hospital 

Outbreaks in busy places such as hospitals, nursing homes and schools are common because the virus can survive for several days on surfaces or objects touched by an infected person.

In the event of Norovirus being detected in the hospital, the Trust follows strict infection prevention and control procedures which may include restrictions to ward visits. Visiting affected wards during an outbreak is strongly discouraged as visitors are also at risk of contracting the infection.

We understand that this may be of concern to relatives of patients currently on a restricted access ward, however, preventing the spread of infection is a top priority.

The Trust will endeavour to notify visitors of any restrictions or ward closures at the earliest opportunity through both the Trust website and signage within the hospital building.

Top tips for beating Norovirus

If you are coming to visit the hospital please follow the advice below:

Wash your hands or use alcohol hand sanitizer before visiting.

Wash your hands with soap and water after visiting a ward.

If you have children under the age of 11 please think twice about bringing them with you to the hospital, as they are more susceptible to the virus.

If you’re feeling unwell, please visit www.nhs.uk/symptom-checker before coming to the hospital, to check your symptoms and get advice on what to next.

Remember – if you are unwell or suffering from diarrhoea and vomiting, do not visit the hospital!