The Associate Director of Infection Prevention at North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust has issued some advice for people visiting loved ones in hospital when viruses like flu, covid and RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) are on the rise.
Pressures across A&E, urgent care and ambulance services are still at extreme levels.
Levels of hospital admissions due to flu and Covid are increasing so it is more important than ever to get vaccinated.
Cumbria has also seen a steep rise in the numbers of people with flu and covid-19.
Clive Graham, Associate Director of Infection Prevention at NCIC, said: “If you are visiting a loved one in hospital please make sure you regularly wash your hands and we strongly advise mask wearing to reduce the risk of infection which could impact the person you are visiting. Please do not visit if you are feeling unwell.
“Cover your mouth when coughing and sneezing and wash your hands regularly.
“Remember some patients are vulnerable and such infections delay them being well enough to get home.”
Visitors should look on our public website before visiting to see if there are any outbreaks on the wards you are planning to visit.
Please make sure you get the flu vaccine if you have been advised to. For more information about flu, visit www.nhs.uk/conditions/flu/
Flu can be very unpleasant but you should only dial 999 or go to A&E if you have sudden chest pain, have difficulty breathing or you start coughing up a lot of blood.
In most cases, there are things you can do yourself to help recover from flu symptoms such as drinking plenty of water and resting. A pharmacist can also recommend flu remedies.
If you have symptoms of flu and you’re worried about your baby or child’s symptoms; you’re 65 or over; you’re pregnant or you have a long term medical condition or weakened immune system.
The public are advised to only call 999 or visit A&E if their condition is a threat to life or limb. Patients can expect long waits as services focus their attention on the most urgent cases.