There was recently an outbreak of COVID-19 amongst staff in a West London hospital, causing it to close.

The outbreak was announced at Hillingdon Hospital on Friday (June 3) and it is understood that a total of 70 workers have gone into self-isolation.

A spokesperson for the Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust reported that "a number" of those in self-isolation have tested positive for the virus and in response, the hospital has taken the "precautionary" measure to temporarily close.

The hospital is situated close to Heathrow Airport in Uxbridge and stands as the direct hospital in which all airport emergencies go through.

With the trust also running through Mount Vernon Hospital in Northwood, they provide clinical services to over half a million people a year, including over 97,000 patients within the emergency departments.

The spokesperson also added that the trust is doing everything in their power to control the outbreak and also confirmed that the London Ambulance Service has been asked to take new patients to other hospitals nearby.

Obtained by The Guardian, the hospital's chief executive, Sarah Tedford, wrote in a letter to staff, saying: "All the way through this [pandemic], we have followed national guidance and it has kept us safe. So what is happening now? I am told some of you are not wearing appropriate masks and you are not adhering to social distancing. This has resulted in an outbreak on a ward where our staff have contracted Covid-19. If you do not follow the guidance, we cannot keep you safe.

"I don't like wearing a mask, but it would be irresponsible of me not to do so. Please think very carefully about what you are doing and ask yourselves if you are keeping yourself safe and if you are keeping each other safe. This is no time to be complacent: we are not out of the woods yet."

She added: "Can I please remind you to take responsibility for yourself and your team and help us all beat Covid-19? The lockdown is being lifted. Please ensure we play our part in not spreading Covid-19 and leading by example. This is such a serious matter, and at the moment I’m afraid some of us are not demonstrating the behaviour we should be. If you see someone not adhering to the guidance, please remind them of their responsibilities. We all need a little nudge at times."

Although this is only a 'precautionary' measure, let's hope this doesn't escalate into a bigger problem than it already is.

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