Strict visitor restrictions have been put in place at University Hospital Kerry due to a suspected Norovirus outbreak. The restrictions have been introduced with immediate effect due to patients presenting with the virus – more commonly known as the vomiting bug. General Manager TJ O Connor has issued an appeal to people not to visit UHK or any healthcare facility if they have been affected by vomiting and/or diarrhoea, or if they have been in contact with anyone with these symptoms until they have been symptom free for 72 hours. The bug is currently prevalent in the community he said, and visitors may unknowingly bring the bug into the hospital when visiting sick relatives or friends. Visitors are asked to adhere strictly to visiting times of 2pm – 4pm and 6.30pm – 8.30pm. Two visitors are allowed per patient with strictly no children allowed to visit. Visitors are advised they must use the alcohol hand gels supplied as they enter and leave the hospital and to co-operate with hospital security staff. The five wards that have visiting exceptions include: ” Intensive Care/ Coronary Care Unit, visiting is welcomed but restricted to immediate family only from 3.00pm – 4.00pm and 6.00pm – 8.00pm daily. ” Special Care Baby Unit, also known as the Neonatal Unit, visiting is welcomed but restricted to parents and grandparents. ” Ardagh Medical Rehabilitation Ward visiting times are between 4.00pm – 8.00pm daily. ” Maternity Unit Labour Ward by agreement with nurse manager day/night. Post Natal Ward – Partners only may visit from 12:30pm to 8.30pm. ” In the Children’s Ward, parents or guardians may visit anytime. Anyone with any queries about visiting times or visiting a particular ward should contact UHK in advance on 066-7184000. The HSE confirmed these restrictions will remain in place over the weekend and will be reviewed on Monday.
Ger Counihan is chairman of the Kerry Vintners’ Federation. They met Minister Ross this week to raise concerns about rural towns and villages.http://media.radiokerry.ie/upload/radiokerry/audio/repeatger.mp3