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Norovirus outbreak shuts West Cumberland Hospital ward

A hospital ward in Whitehaven has closed to visitors following an outbreak of the norovirus vomiting bug.

Patient visits have been temporarily suspended for Ward 4A at West Cumberland Hospital.

People are also being asked to avoid visiting if they or their family members have had symptoms in the past two days.

The highly contagious bug can cause vomiting, diarrhoea, muscle pain and stomach cramps.

A spokeswoman for North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust said: “We know that many visitors feel they must take every opportunity to visit sick friends or relatives.

“We appreciate this is difficult for patients and their loved ones but the more people who pass through our hospitals, the greater risk of the virus spreading.”

A similar warning was issued in April when there was an outbreak of the bug on Ward 3A.

Although people usually recover without treatment in between 24 and 72 hours, the trust said people should stay away from work, school and other gatherings until at least 48 hours after symptoms have passed.

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