A coronavirus outbreak has been confirmed at the Ayrshire Maternity Unit at Crosshouse Hospital.

NHS Ayrshire and Arran confirmed the news this morning and said all “affected staff, patients and their families have been informed”. 

The outbreak of COVID-19 comes less than two weeks after the health board announced that pregnant women being admitted as an inpatient to Ayrshire Maternity Unit would be required to be tested for COVID-19.

Dr Crawford McGuffie, medical director, for NHS Ayrshire and Arran said: "NHS Ayrshire and Arran can confirm that a number of cases connected to a ward within Ayrshire Maternity Unit have tested positive for COVID-19. Affected staff, patients and their families have been informed.

"Patients continue to be cared for with the appropriate infection control measures in place including enhanced environmental disinfection.

"We have notified Antimicrobial Resistance and Healthcare Associated Infection Scotland (ARHAIS) of the incident in line with the national reporting requirements.

"We appreciate this is a very worrying time. However, we would like to assure members of the public that every measure is being taken to protect patients and staff.

"To respect and maintain patient confidentiality it is not possible to release any further information at this time.

"We would like to remind people of the symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19): new persistent cough; high temperature; and / or loss of taste and smell. Anyone who develops any of these symptoms should book a test and self-isolate immediately."