Colchester: Hospital was forced to partially close ‘over possible Ebola case’

Colchester General Hospital (PA)
Colchester General Hospital (PA)

A section of a hospital was reportedly closed temporarily over a potential Ebola case.

The urgent treatment centre at Colchester General Hospital was shut from Wednesday afternoon to Thursday morning to new patients as deep cleaning was carried out.

The Trust which runs the hospital, East Suffolk and North Essex Foundation Trust, said it was due to an “infection control issue”.

The BBC reported that the UK Health Security Agency said the closure was related to a “possible” case of Ebola, but that it has confirmed there are “no confirmed cases of Ebola in the UK”.

Dr Meera Chand, the agency’s Director of Clinical and Emerging Infection said:  “Individuals who have travelled recently and report illness are routinely assessed by NHS clinicians for a variety of infectious diseases.”

A spokesperson told the Standard it did not comment on individuals.

A spokeswoman for the NHS trust had earlier said on Thursday: "Thank you to all our patients and staff for their support yesterday afternoon when we had to temporarily close one clinical area at Colchester Hospital, the urgent treatment centre, to new patients.

“This was because of an infection control issue. The centre is now fully open."

Ebola is a serious viral infection that originated in sub-Saharan Africa which kills around half of those who get it.

Initial symptoms include a high temperature, a headache, joint and muscle pain, a sore throat and severe muscle weakness.

Uganda is grappling with its deadliest Ebola outbreak in more than a decade, which was first detected in the Mubende district in late September.

A 2012 outbreak in the country led to 17 deaths out of 24 confirmed cases but was declared over in less than 3 months.