Coronavirus outbreaks at Morriston Hospital quadruple in a week

More wards at Morriston Hospital have been affected by the coronavirus outbreak as cases there rise.

It was announced last week that routine cardiac surgery had been suspended at the hospital following an outbreak of the virus, with most of the cases within cardiac services.

At that time 15 patients and staff had tested positive.

Swansea Bay University Health Board has now said that “a small number” of other wards are now also managing “similar but unconnected outbreaks”.

Across the hospital, 39 patients and 28 members of staff have now tested positive for coronavirus to date.

Some of the patients have been discharged home with the appropriate advice, while those who remain in hospital are being carefully managed.

Members of staff who have tested positive and their contacts are self-isolating at home.

The affected wards are closed to new patients and routine planned cardiac surgery currently remains suspended. Emergency and urgent patients are still able to receive care from staff working within stringent infection control arrangements.

The health board explained that hospital staff were working closely with Public Health Wales to carefully manage the outbreaks and limit the spread of infection, while doing all they could to protect patient services.

Morriston Hospital unit director Deb Lewis, and nurse director Mark Madams, said in a joint statement: “We would like to put on record our thanks to the staff at Morriston Hospital, who are responding magnificently, demonstrating great resilience and bravery, while continuing to put patients at the heart of everything they do.”

At Singleton Hospital, an outbreak among maternity staff remains stable with no new coronavirus cases reported.

There is no evidence of transmission to mothers and babies.

Do you agree with the fire-break lockdown in Wales:

The health board’s executive medical director, Professor Richard Evans, explained that on Monday morning across its sites there were a total of 62 patients with confirmed cases of coronavirus.

He said: “This continues to be a very challenging time for the NHS as a whole. We would like to reassure patients that their safety and that of our staff is of utmost importance and we are doing all we can, working with our colleagues in Public Health Wales, to contain the spread of the virus while minimising the impact on our services.

“Aside from the impact of these particular outbreaks, our hospitals are also feeling the pressure from increasing transmission of the virus in the community, resulting in an increasing number of people being admitted to hospital.

“On Monday morning across our sites we had a total of 62 patients with confirmed Covid-19 and 25 suspected of having the infection. That is 31 more patients with confirmed and suspected Covid-19 than we had on Friday, October 16.

“These figures clearly demonstrate the impact the virus is having on our local health services.

“Contact tracing has identified that household contacts and workplaces continue to be a significant source of infection and those community infections are having a knock-on effect on our hospitals.”

Find the latest coronavirus statistics for your area:

Mr Evans added: “We understand this is a hugely challenging situation, particularly as we head into the ‘fire-break’ lockdown for two weeks.

“It’s important to emphasise though, that this is not just a problem for one part of society, which is why we must all follow the rules and reduce the spread of this dangerous infection.”

WalesOnline – Swansea