Hospital on lockdown as coronavirus outbreak tears through intensive care ward

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An NHS hospital is reportedly on lockdown after Coronavirus rampaged through its intensive care and renal wards.

St Helier hospital in Sutton, south London, is operated by Epsom and St Helier University Hospital's Trust is under investiagation after the major outbreak.

It is believed ambulances are now being diverted away from the hospital to prevent spreading the infection.

A hospital source told the Sun: “Infection control in intensive care is very strict. It’s very concerning that people fighting for their life already have become infected.”

It is reported that six patients were invected over the weekend sparking concerns that the virus has got into the hospital’s ICU.

Bosses have plunged the hospital into lockdown by restricting visitors and turning ambulances away from A&E, the Sun reported.

Politicians have been under pressure to introduce routine testing for hospital staff for the potentially fatal virus.

Last week the House of Commons heath committee threw its weight behind calls for increased checks to protect vulnerable patients.

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Only last week another hospital, in Basildon, Essex, was struck by an outbreak of the disease with 21 staff and patients testing positive.

It is understood the virus swept through the respiratory ward rather than the facility’s specialist Covid-19 sector.

Infections at hospitals after crept up in recent weeks with many believing staff are becoming spreaders.

A spokesman for Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust told the Sun: “A small number of patients have tested positive for COVID-19 during admission to the Renal Department and Intensive Care Unit at St Helier Hospital.

“The safety and wellbeing of our patients and staff is our priority and those who tested positive have been isolated from other patients, with arrangements in place to maintain safe and high-quality care. We continue to follow all relevant infection prevention and control guidelines.

"Visiting has been restricted for some areas, as soon as clinicians are confident that the measures can be lifted in a way that is safe for patients and staff, they will be.”

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