Royal Lancaster Infirmary in third norovirus outbreak

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A hospital in north Lancashire is restricting visiting to several wards due to the third outbreak of norovirus infection since February.

Five wards at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary have been affected by the highly contagious winter bug.

Admission to wards was restricted when the first outbreak was reported by University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust on 20 February.

Visitors were also asked to stay away in May when all but five wards closed.

The wards affected are 20, 21, 36, 37, and the Acute Medical Unit.

Chief operating officer Juliet Walters said the decision had been made "to help prevent the spread of the infection and ensure safe patient care".

"Our staff are working extremely hard to deal with this outbreak quickly and this decision will help us return services to normal as soon as possible," she added.

The norovirus bug - which causes vomiting, stomach cramps, fever and diarrhoea - is easily spread from person to person.

Symptoms usually begin between 12 to 48 hours after a person becomes infected, with most healthy people making a recovery within one to three days.

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