Two wards in Belfast hospital close due to Covid-19 outbreaks

Hospital under ‘extreme pressure’ as 96 patients test positive on admission in last month

Ulster Hospital in Belfast on Friday had 150 patients waiting in the emergency department, and 50 more on trollies. Photograph: Google Street View

Ulster Hospital in Belfast on Friday had 150 patients waiting in the emergency department, and 50 more on trollies. Photograph: Google Street View

 

Two wards have been closed in Belfast’s Ulster Hospital due to Covid-19 outbreaks.

The South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust said that over the last month, 96 patients had tested positive for the virus on admission to the Ulster Hospital, while another 16 patients had tested positive during their stay.

In a post on Twitter, the Trust warned that the hospital was under “extreme pressure”, with 150 patients waiting in the emergency department, and 50 more on trollies.

“If your condition is not LIFE THREATENING you will have to wait a very long time,” the tweet said.

Meanwhile, the Trust said in a statement on Friday: “Covid-positive patients are admitted to side rooms/bays which are designated for Covid patients.

“There are a number of designated wards for Covid-positive patients.

“On occasion, non-Covid patients are admitted to these wards due to their clinical condition and requirement for specialist treatment (such as respiratory), however, they are segregated.

“All patients are risk-assessed on admission and prior to placement and are kept under review during their stay. This includes regular testing, as per the PHA (Public Health Agency) guidance.

“Infection prevention and control measures are in place in every ward.”

The trust’s policy is to test patients for the virus on admission to the hospital and on days five to seven of their stay, or if they develop symptoms. – PA