E.coli O157 & Haemolytic Uraemic Syndrome

Teeside nursery closes after children become ill with suspected E.coli O157

22nd August 2011

Twenty-five children attending the Playdays nursery at The James Cook University Hospital, in Middlesbrough, became ill with diarrhoea and local tests indicate that 5 have E.coli O157. However, the samples are now being analysed further to confirm the diagnosis. Of the five children diagnosed, one is still in hospital and three have been discharged following hospital treatment.

Playdays is in a separate building to the main James Cook hospital and provides care for children aged six weeks to school age.

South Tees Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the hospital, has been contacting parents of children who attend the nursery, which was closed on 12th August to allow the trust to deep clean the premises. Managers reopened the property on Monday once the recommended control measures had been put into place. But it was closed again the same day as a precautionary measure while further investigations take place. Parents with children at the nursery have been advised not to take their children to other nurseries because of the risk of further infection.

Chief executive Simon Pleydell said "The outbreak is unfortunate for the families and for the children involved, but there are no implications as far as the hospital is concerned. The Health Protection Agency in the North-East is investigating the outbreak. The nursery has been closed until 30th August."

The parents of the children who attend the nursery have been advised to call NHS Direct on 0845-4647, their usual GP or out-of-hours service if their child develops severe diarrhoea or diarrhoea with blood.

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