St. Mary’s Declares Gastrointestinal Outbreak on Half of its Fifth Floor General Medicine Unit

April 14th, 2014

April 14, 2014 (Kitchener) – St. Mary’s General Hospital (SMGH) is today declaring a gastrointestinal outbreak on half of SMGH’s Fifth Floor General Medicine unit.  Symptoms include vomiting and/or diarrhea. Visitor restrictions are in place and Waterloo Region Public Health has been notified.

Half of the General Medicine floor has been closed to transfers and admissions. Five admitted patients and four staff members have since been confirmed to have symptoms which include nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea. It is not known at this time if all cases are related. As of this morning, patient admissions have been restricted in half of the General Medicine Unit and admissions that would normally go there are being accommodated elsewhere in the hospital.

SMGH is taking precautions to keep the illness from spreading. Those patients with symptoms have been accommodated in one area of the unit with the appropriate isolation precautions in place, and efforts to coordinate staff care specific to each area are being taken. Enhanced cleaning and infection control procedures have been initiated and will continue until the outbreak is declared over.

Visitors are asked to adhere to one visitor at a time restrictions and follow infection control practices while visiting patients on the affected unit:

  • ·         wash hands on arrival at the hospital
  • ·         report to the nursing station on the fifth floor before visiting
  • ·         wash hands on arrival at the unit
  • ·         use hand gel before leaving the unit
  • ·         food and drink are prohibited on the floor until further notice 

To help prevent the spread of illness to patients and staff, potential visitors are asked not to come to the hospital if they have symptoms of a stomach illness, particularly vomiting and/or diarrhea. These measures are essential in helping us to manage this outbreak and protect the safety of our patients. 


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Anne Kelly

519-749-6578, ext. 1501