Coronavirus pod to be set up in KGH car park

Here's what to do if you think you've got coronavirus

Kettering General Hospital. File picture.
Kettering General Hospital. File picture.

A pod to isolate people who think they might have coronavirus is being set up in a portable building at Kettering General Hospital.

All hospital trusts across the country have been told they must take steps to ensure that patients who have the symptoms of the deadly virus do not come into contact with other hospital users.

KGH have confirmed this evening that they are in the process of setting up their coronavirus pod in hospital grounds.

As of this afternoon (Thursday, February 13), nine UK patients have tested positive for the virus out of 2,521 tested.

Public Health England say that all hospital services are operating as normal.

Today, a government statement said that the risk to the general public is moderate but said that if you have arrived back to the UK from mainland China, Thailand, Japan, Republic of Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia or Macau within 14 days and develop symptoms of cough or fever or shortness of breath, should immediately:

- Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as you would with the flu. Do not go immediately to hospital.

- Call NHS 111 to inform them of your recent travel to the country.

Like the common cold, coronavirus infection usually occurs through close contact with a person with novel coronavirus via cough and sneezes or hand contact. A person can also be infected by touching contaminated surfaces if they do not wash their hands.

People are reminded to:

- always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze. Then bin the tissue, and wash your hands, or use a sanitiser gel.

- Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using public transport. Use a sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.

- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

- Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.

The risk of being in close contact with a person with coronavirus or contaminated surfaces is very low at the current time, as members of the public who have visited Wuhan, Hubei province, China are currently in isolation.

Testing of suspected coronavirus cases is carried out in line with strict regulations. This means that suspected cases are kept in isolation, away from public areas of the hospital and returned home also in isolation.

Any equipment that come into contact with suspected cases are thoroughly cleaned as appropriate. Specific guidance has also been shared with NHS staff to help safeguard them and others. Patients can be reassured that their safety is a top priority, and are encouraged to attend all appointments as usual.