King George Hospital’s NHS trust has apologised after a coronavirus outbreak in the Ilford hospital spread the virus to uninfected patients.

A patient cared for in a “shared ward area” of the hospital before receiving their test result spread coronavirus to three other patients.

All patients are tested for the virus when admitted to the hospital and those who show symptoms or test positive are isolated.

The hospital is managed by Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust (BHRUT), which also manages Queen’s Hospital in Romford.

Read more: More than 120 new coronavirus cases reported in Redbridge for second week running

BHRUT’s chief medical officer Magda Smith said: “Keeping our patients safe during the Covid-19 pandemic is our highest priority, which is why we test every patient for the virus when they are admitted to our hospitals.

“In this case, a patient who was not showing symptoms was cared for in a shared ward area before receiving their test result, which was positive.

“This resulted in three other patients in that area contracting the virus. We are very sorry to these patients and their families for this.

“Patients should be reassured that everyone who is admitted for planned surgery is tested, and must have a negative result, before coming in for their procedure, and that we follow the infection control guidance for London in caring for our patients.”

At a meeting of Havering’s Health and Wellbeing board on September 23, she said that, while there were only a “small number” of internal outbreaks, it is a “concern” for the trust.

She also reported there were 28 coronavirus patients in King George Hospital and Queen’s Hospital at that time, including “a few” in intensive care.

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