Page last updated at 08:23 GMT, Sunday, 5 April 2009 09:23 UK

Vomiting bug outbreak shuts wards

Seven wards have been closed at a Devon hospital because of an outbreak of a vomiting bug.

A number of routine operations at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital have also been cancelled and visitors banned from wards affected by norovirus.

The hospital said, despite the start of the school Easter holidays, babies and young children should not be brought in to visit patients.

The bug, which is highly contagious, causes diarrhoea and vomiting.

Visitors who have had any diarrhoea and vomiting (D&V) symptoms in the past three days are being asked to stay away from the hospital completely.

Judy Potter, director of infection control, said: "Norovirus spreads very easily through contact with anyone who already has it.

"It is a concern that during the Easter half term holiday visitors may bring children with them into the hospital.

"We are asking the public to keep babies and young children at home."

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