Learn more about this outbreak here, as reported by NBC News Chicago.
How To Help Prevent The Spread Of The Norovirus
From the CDC website.
Noroviruses are a group of related viruses that can cause gastroenteritis (GAS-tro-en-ter-I-tis), which is inflammation of the stomach and intestines. This leads to cramping, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
The CDC estimates that each year Norovirus causes 19 to 21 million illnesses, 56,000 to 71,000 hospitalizations and 570 to 800 deaths. Anyone can get infected with norovirus and you can get it more than once. It is estimated that a person will get norovirus about 5 times during their lifetime. Many people usually get sick with norovirus in cooler months, especially from November to April.
This short video explains what norovirus is, how it spreads, and how you can protect yourself and loved ones from getting it.
Here is some basic information from the CDC:
Most common symptoms:
Less common symptoms:
Norovirus spreads quickly. It is found in the vomit and stool of infected people. You can get it by:
People with norovirus illness are contagious from the moment they begin feeling sick and for the first few days after they recover. Some people may be contagious for even longer. There is no vaccine to prevent norovirus infection or drug to treat sick people. Learn how to protect yourself and others by following a few simple steps.
Practice proper hand hygiene. Wash your hands carefully with soap and water, especially after using the toilet and changing diapers and always before eating or preparing food. If soap and water aren’t available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer (such as Purell). These alcohol-based products can help reduce the number of germs on your hands, but they are not a substitute for washing with soap and water.
Take care in the kitchen. Carefully rinse fruits and vegetables, and cook oysters and other shellfish thoroughly before eating. Wash hands carefully with soap and water regularly and do not prepare food while infected. People with norovirus illness should not prepare food for others while they have symptoms and for at least 2 days after they recover from their illness. Also see For Food Workers: Norovirus and Working with Food.
Clean and disinfect contaminated surfaces. After throwing up or having diarrhea, immediately clean and disinfect contaminated surfaces using a bleach-based household cleaner as directed on the product label. If no such cleaning product is available, you can use a solution made with 5 tablespoons to 1.5 cups of household bleach per 1 gallon of water.
Wash laundry thoroughly. Immediately remove and wash clothing or linens that may be contaminated with vomit or stool. Handle soiled items carefully—try not to shake them —to avoid spreading virus. If available, wear rubber or disposable gloves while handling soiled clothing or linens and wash your hands after handling. Wash soiled items with detergent at the maximum available cycle length and then machine dry.
Get more information from the CDC, click here.