Portlaoise Hospital has been forced to close a ward to new admissions following a Covid-19 outbreak.
Management at the hospital confirmed to LaoisToday that a number of patients and staff have become infected.
They say all other services are continuing and people who have appointments should continue to attend unless otherwise advised.
In a statement, Portlaoise Hospital say that the Hospital Outbreak Control Team are actively contact tracing both staff and patients – and carrying out testing.
They said: “The Midland Regional Hospital Portlaoise can confirm that one ward at the Hospital is now closed to new admissions because of Covid 19 infection involving a number of patients and staff members.
“All other services at the Hospital continue to operate as normal.
“Patients who have appointments to attend the Hospital should attend unless contacted by the Hospital directly.
“In accordance with HPSC guidelines, the Hospital Outbreak Control Team was convened.
“Covid 19 testing and contact tracing of both staff and patients is actively on-going to ensure the protection of public health.
“Any staff identified as close contacts of Covid 19 cases are now self-isolating.
“The Hospital would like to reassure patients, staff and the public that all appropriate steps have been taken in accordance with national guidelines.
“Staff and patients have been provided with key Hospital contacts if any concerns need to be addressed.
“The protection of public health is of the utmost importance to the Hospital and every effort is being taken to reduce the risk of spread of Covid-19 at this time.
“Please adhere to public health advice and the level 3 restrictions at this time. Do not visit the hospital or any health care facility if you have any symptoms suggestive of Covid 19 infection.
“Please contact your GP by phone for advice if you have any concerns. Further advice is available at www.hse.ie.”