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Worcestershire Royal Hospital patients alerted over staff member with TB

Worcestershire Royal Hospital patients alerted over staff member with TB

  • 2 September 2019
Image copyright PA
Image caption The trust said it was formally informed about the worker's TB infection by Public Health England in June

A hospital has written to 349 patients and 129 staff over suspected contact with a healthcare worker with tuberculosis (TB), it has emerged.

The letters gave helpline details to the patients treated at the Worcestershire Royal Hospital.

Worcestershire Acute Hospitals Trust said it had not identified any patients or staff infected by the worker.

The trust, which was informed of the case by Public Health England in June, said the risk of developing TB was low.

But it urged anyone with symptoms to contact their GP.

The trust added there was "no connection" between the alert at the Worcester hospital and one at the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch last year.

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Last September the trust wrote to 141 patients over suspected contact with an employee at the Alexandra with TB.

TB symptoms

Image copyright Science Photo Library
  • TB symptoms include persistent coughing, weight loss and tiredness
  • TB patients must take antibiotics daily for six months
  • The illness can cause nerve damage, kidney and liver impairment, and loss of sight or hearing

Shaun Pike, a Redditch GP and chair of the Local Medical Committee said of the letters sent in the latest case: "The letter has details of how they can access the information they need to assess their risk and then to help manage it."

He added TB was treated with "very specific antibiotics" so medical help needed to be sought so it could be correctly diagnosed.

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