Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals

NHS Foundation Trust

Fri Dec 12 2008

Precautionary ward closure

Categories: 2008 Media Releases

10 December 2008 

Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust closed a ward to new admissions at Stamford Hospital yesterday, (9 December), to manage patients with diarrhoea and vomiting (D&V).  This remains closed today.

• The John van Geest unit at Stamford Hospital closed to new admissions yesterday, as five patients developed symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting.  Today
(10 December), those patients affected have had no further symptoms overnight and there are no new cases of D&V.  One member of staff is affected.

Chris Wilkinson, Director of Nursing, said: “In-line with the Trust’s infection prevention and control policy the John van Geest ward at Stamford Hospital has closed to new admissions to limit the spread of diarrhoea and vomiting. 

“The ward will remain closed until it has been symptom-free for 48 hours.  It will then be specially cleaned before being reopened.  People can help to limit the spread of infection which is commonly bought into hospital from the community.  We ask people who have had diarrhoea and vomiting in the past 72 hours not to visit the hospital and not to bring young children to visit patients who have had diarrhoea and vomiting.”

The Trust would like to remind visitors that they can also help to tackle infections in the following ways:

• Not visiting the hospital if they have had diarrhoea and/or vomiting (D&V) or a cold in the past 72 hours
• Being familiar with visiting guidelines, especially a maximum of two visitors for each patient and ward visiting times (for the majority of ward areas these are 2-4pm and 6-8pm)
• Not bringing young children to visit patients who have had D&V
• Always performing good hand washing on entering and exiting ward areas
• Not using patient toilets
• Not sitting on patient beds
• Not sharing food with patients


Note to editors:
The Trust has rigid infection prevention and control measures in place as a matter of course and is continually looking to make further improvements:
• It has a successful isolation ward in place at the Edith Cavell Hospital and has now introduced this scheme at the District Hospital as well. This will allow it to move patients, where clinically appropriate, with an infection into the same ward to prevent further spread. 
• It is always trying to improve antibiotic prescribing to help fight C diff (antibiotics sometimes destroy the good bacteria in a patient’s gut which allows the C diff organism to spread) 
• It continually promotes good hand hygiene to patients, staff and visitors
• It has strict cleaning codes in place in normal service and during and after any outbreak