Isolation ward created at Scarborough Hospital in preparation for coronavirus

An isolation ward is being created at Scarborough Hospital in preparation for the coronavirus outbreak.

Thursday, 12th March 2020, 4:42 pm

Patients were discharged from Lilac ward yesterday in order to create space for the new measures.

A spokesperson for York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust said: “The Trust is preparing for the impact of COVID-19 coronavirus and following national guidance our hospitals are putting in place isolation wards so that when patients are admitted to hospital with suspected symptoms of the virus they can be kept isolated from other patients.

"This will help minimise the risk to patients and staff, help prevent the spread of the virus and ensure we can appropriately manage their care.”

Scarborough Hospital. Picture: JPI Media

The Trust sought to reassure patients and relatives who had been discharged yesterday.

The spokesperson added: "Patients are only discharged from hospital when it is deemed clinically safe to do so.

"They are never discharged if they still need care that can only be provided in hospital.

“For lots of people it is far better for their physical and psychological wellbeing to recover at home or in a community setting with the right support, which also means that beds are available for those who need them more."

COVID-19, or coronavirus, was named as a controllable pandemic by the World Health Organisation yesterday.

The symptoms of COVID-19 are a dry cough, high temperature and shortness of breath, though these are also symptoms of other more common illnesses such as the flu and common cold.

Advice from the NHS on how to protect yourself continues to be wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when you cough or sneeze, dispose of tissues and do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth with unclean hands.

If you think you may have coronavirus or have visited a high risk area in the past 14 days ring NHS 111 or visit 111.nhs.uk/covid-19 for advice.

They may then make an appointment for you at the drive-through testing service, or isolation pod, at Scarborough Hospital where staff will come out to take a swab.

As of 9am today, a total of 29,764 people have been tested, of which 596 were positive for the virus.

There have currently been three confirmed cases in York and none in the rest of North Yorkshire.