More patients cleared of virus

19:32, Jul 01 2014

The containment area for patients showing norovirus symptoms has been reduced to the medical ward at Timaru Hospital.

Previously patients in the assessment, treatment and rehabilitation ward (ATR) and surgical wards were also in isolation.

South Canterbury District Health Board communications manager Nicola Prue said five patients were now in the medical ward, experiencing diarrhoea or diarrhoea and vomiting, with the characteristics of norovirus or a similar virus.

One member of staff was still on sick leave.

"The medical ward is now being used as the norovirus containment area of the hospital," Prue said."

The doors of the medical ward were closed during the normal working day and locked once the receptionist was not on duty, till 8am yesterday.

"Closing the doors and at times locking them on the medical ward means normal open access is partially restricted, so that the receptionist and ward staff can advise on the health status of a patient and make suitable arrangements if they wish to make contact with affected patients - not restrict all the patients within the ward," Prue said.

The health board is once again advising people to keep hospital visits to a minimum, especially if they had any symptoms of illness.


The Timaru Herald