Hospital enduring busiest time of year

Ipswich Hospital today reported an increase in the numbers of people falling and slipping on ice.

IPSWICH: Ipswich Hospital today reported an increase in the numbers of people falling and slipping on ice.

There were 61 new patients in the hospital's fracture clinic yesterday, most of whom had suffered slips, trips and falls due to the wintry conditions.

This is an increase compared to the same day a week earlier when there were 41 new patients admitted to the clinic.

In total there were 150 people in the clinic yesterday, which is about a third higher than would usually be expected.

The hospital is also seeing a general increase in the number of patients suffering conditions triggered by the freezing temperatures, like respiratory problems.

Jan Rowsell, Ipswich Hospital spokeswoman, said: “We are really busy and there has been an increase in activity because of the weather. There are a large number of very poorly people who need urgent care. It is our busiest time of year.”

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As well as dealing with the influx of people, the Heath Road site is also closed to visitors. People are urged not to visit for the time being for their own safety and to protect the patients.

One ward, Saxmundham, remains closed to new admissions due to an outbreak of the winter sickness bug (Norovirus).

Any visitor who feels unwell themselves should not come to the hospital. This measure is expected to remain in place until next Monday.

However those visiting patients in maternity, critical care, children's services, Somersham Ward (cancer centre) and the emergency assessment units will be welcome at the hospital.

Gwen Collins, Ipswich Hospital's director of nursing and quality, said: “We know how important it is for patients in hospital to have visitors, but during this really cold spell, we are asking all visitors to put their own safety first and not come to the hospital.”

Essential visitors are being asked to park in Car Park F, which is the main outpatients car-park (directly in front of the main roundabout as you come onto the hospital site).

Have you suffered an injury since the snow snap started? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.