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Nursing home in lockdown following gastro outbreak

OUTBREAK: There has been an outbreak of gastro at the Gracehaven nursing home. Photo: Zach Hogg / NewsMail
OUTBREAK: There has been an outbreak of gastro at the Gracehaven nursing home. Photo: Zach Hogg / NewsMail Zach Hogg BUN180814GRA1

FAMILIES have restricted access to their loved ones at a Bundaberg nursing home as the facility remains in lockdown following an outbreak of gastro that has struck down residents and workers.

A spokeswoman for Gracehaven Aged Care Service on Dr Mays Rd has confirmed there had been an outbreak of gastroenteritis, as well as three confirmed cases of norovirus - a strand of gastro that causes diarrhoea and vomiting.

She said one staff member and two residents had been diagnosed with norovirus, and a number of other staff and residents had contracted gastro, since the outbreak about a week ago.

"The virus is still around - there are only two people still left with it," she said.

"All the staff who caught it are back at work."

The NewsMail was contacted by a concerned son, whose mother was a resident of the facility.

"We do not know if the situation has been officially reported or not," the unidentified family member said.

"Members of my family who attend my mother every day have not been allowed to see her."

But a spokesman for the home has confirmed that it is following its outbreak management plan and Queensland Health outbreak management guidelines, and that the outbreak had been reported to the Public Health Unit.

"The health of our residents and staff are our top priority, and all steps are currently being taken to control the spread of the virus and to ensure our residents are receiving the best possible care," residential aged care manager Bryan Mason said.

"There is limited access allowed to the facility."

Mr Mason said the facility would remain quarantined until all signs of the infection had passed.

"Our staff are doing a great job in containing the outbreak and we are hopeful our residents recover quickly," he said.

Wide Bay Public Health Unit director Margaret Young said the Public Health Unit had been supporting a Bundaberg nursing home that had experienced cases of norovirus.

"An increase of norovirus cases is common at this time of year and anyone who contracts norovirus should restrict contact with other people and to stay home until two days after symptoms cease," she said.

Topics:  gastro



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