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Sickness bugs close two Royal London Hospital wards

PUBLISHED: 19:24 12 November 2008 | UPDATED: 13:46 05 October 2010

Unique ID: ybas011

Caption: A nurse washing her hands as part of infection control.

Restrictions: NHS Photo Library - for use in NHS, local authority Social Care services and Department of Health material only

Copyright: ©Crown Copyright

Unique ID: ybas011 Caption: A nurse washing her hands as part of infection control. Restrictions: NHS Photo Library - for use in NHS, local authority Social Care services and Department of Health material only Copyright: ©Crown Copyright

TWO hospital wards were closed in East London this week following the outbreak of a potentially fatal stomach bug at the Royal London. A general medicine ward has been turning away new admissions since Friday, after four patients were discovered with the superbug C.difficile. An he elderly patients’ ward was closed for a week because five patients were suffering with diarrhoea

Gemma Collins

TWO hospital wards were closed in East London this week following the outbreak of a potentially fatal stomach bug at the Royal London.

One ward, the Phyllis Friend general medicine, has been turning away admissions since last Friday after four patients were discovered to have the superbug C.difficile.

Family and friends visiting the ward are being given gloves and aprons to wear.

The cause of the C.diff outbreak is being investigated by the hospital’s infection control team.

Hospital bosses confirmed this-evening (Wednesday) that patients diagnosed with the infection, which causes severe diarrhoea and is common among the elderly, have been isolated within the ward.

New patients are not being allowed onto the wards until hospital chiefs are sure they won’t be at risk.

“Four cases of Clostridium difficile have been confirmed and patients have been isolated,” a spokesman said. “The other patients on the ward are still awaiting test results.”

Meanwhile, the second ward, Wellington catering for the elderly, has been closed for a week because five patients were suffering with diarrhoea—it was reopened this afternoon (Wed).

The cases were not linked with the superbug, the hospital assured.

“The Wellington ward has now reopened and patients who were previously suffering from diarrhoea have recovered,” the hospital spokesman added.

“The test results show the diarrhoea was not due to C.Difficile.”

The hospital in Whitechapel was revealed in a Healthcare Commission survey last month as not doing enough to protect patients from superbugs.

There were dusty wards and dirty curtains, while equipment used by patients including chamber pots were not being decontaminated properly, the survey found.

The Royal London was also named and shamed’ earlier this year by the Office of National Inspection with as many as 18 patients a year who died there having caught MRSA or C.diff.


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