A second ward at the Highlands’ flagship hospital has been closed by an outbreak of the winter vomiting bug.
Five patients are affected in ward 7C, a general medical ward at Inverness’s Raigmore Hospital.
And Ward 2C, which shut on Friday, remains closed, with 15 people now affected with symptoms of vomiting and diarrhoea.
Health bosses have pleaded with visitors to stay away from the facility while they deal with the outbreak.
Large signs have put up at the entrance to the hospital, warning people who have been in contact with those suffering norovirus symptoms not to enter.
Dr Chin Lim, consultant microbiologist for NHS Highland, said: “By restricting visiting to the affected area it helps hospital staff protect the health, privacy and dignity of our patients.
“Again we would stress that people do not come to the hospital/s to visit if they have, or live with someone who has, had any vomiting or diarrhoea within the previous 48hrs. By doing this we will be able to limit the spread as much as possible.
“Hospital staff will of course be very happy to talk to visitors on the phone so they can get updates on how their relatives are.”
If you feel that visiting is essential please contact the ward first by phone before coming to the hospital. Please do not visit the ward unless by prior arrangement with the nurse in charge.
There is no specific treatment for a norovirus infection and it is not usually necessary to visit a doctor. The best course of action is to stay at home, take paracetamol to relieve symptoms of any fever and to drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration. People should also adhere to strict hand washing techniques to reduce the spread of the virus.