THE trust which runs Colchester, Harwich and Clacton hospitals has closed some bays due to outbreak of the norovirus.

Hospitals across England have closed more than 1,100 beds in the past week because of the effects of the winter vomiting bug.

East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Colchester, Clacton, Harwich and Halstead hospitals, said no wards have been closed.

However, the trust said they are caring for some patients with the illness and said some bays have been closed.

Catherine Morgan, who is the chief nurse at the trust, said: “We are caring for a small number of patients who have norovirus at our hospitals, which is not unusual at this time of the year.

“There have been a number of cases of norovirus in the community and this is reflected by what we are seeing on our wards so some bays have been closed to reduce the risk of the bug spreading.”

Ms Morgan also issued guidance as to who should attend hospital in a bid to stop the highly contagious illness from spreading, especially to people who are already unwell.

She said: “If you’re feeling unwell or you’ve had diarrhoea or vomiting, or you have been in contact with someone who is unwell, you should not visit our hospitals until 48 hours after your last symptom.

“We are grateful for everyone’s support in protecting our patients and ask you to continue to help by washing your hands with soap and water when you arrive and leave the ward you’re visiting.”

The trust did not specify which hospital has closed bays.

Norovirus, which is also called the winter vomiting bug, usually goes within two days.