Sinks installed at hospital entrance in fight against Norovirus

Mobile sinks have been installed at the entrance of The Queen Elizabeth Hospital to encourage visitors to wash their hands before going onto the wards and prevent Norovirus.

The two sinks are the latest line of defence being implemented at the hospital as increasing levels of Norovirus are being seen in the community around West Norfolk.

Norovirus is a food borne infection which can be combatted by thorough hand washing. Alcohol gels are ineffective against the Norovirus.

Last week, the hospital appealed to visitors to stay away from the site for 72 hours after experiencing symptoms such as diarrhoea and sickness, along with reporting to the nurse in charge on arrival to the wards.

Under the latest measure, visitors are now asked to wash their hands in one of the two sinks in front of the hospital’s main doors. Visitors are also asked to wash their hands before touching their relatives on the wards.

The Trust’s Director of Infection Prevention and Control, Dr Ian Hosein, is appealing to visitors to use the sinks and avoid putting their loved one’s health at risk.

Dr Hosein said: “For the protection of our patients, I would ask everyone who is visiting the hospital to please use the two mobile sinks.

“Norvirus is not to be taken lightly and can have a very serious effect on some of our very sick patients.

“The virus appears to behaving differently this year compared to other winters as it has started much earlier. This virus can easily be prevented by the very simple measure of thoroughly washing your hands before preparing food.

“Hands must be washed before any food handling since this virus is not killed by alcohol hand rubs and I would urge outlets where food is prepared and served to heighten their awareness of safety.

“I would also ask the public not to visit the hospital if they have had any vomiting or diarrhoea in the previous 72 hours.”

—ENDS—

Volunteer Emma Bacon is pictured encouraging visitor Joe Zilch to wash his hands in one of the two mobile sinks.

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