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Increase of norovirus-outbreaks in California

1 year ago source


California, United States

A recent announcement from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has revealed that there have been 59 confirmed outbreaks of norovirus in the state since the start of the surveillance year. The norovirus outbreaks have been reported in long-term care facilities and at least one outbreak led an elementary school in Southern California to shut down to prevent rapid spread of the virus.

The CDPH has noted that the cause of gastrointestinal outbreaks is rarely confirmed in a laboratory, leading them to believe that the reported number of outbreaks may be an underestimation. The health department is relying on wastewater monitoring to identify locations of reported norovirus outbreaks, which have been steadily declining in Southern California but remain steady in areas of Northern California.

The norovirus is highly contagious and spreads primarily through direct and indirect contact with an infected person's feces or vomit. Symptoms of the virus manifest between 12 to 48 hours after contact and can last up to three days. There is no treatment for norovirus specifically, but the health department advised people who are sick to stay hydrated to replace fluids lost from vomiting and diarrhea.

At the end of March, cases appeared to peak in California, leading to the closure of Washington Carver Elementary School in Long Beach for five days. The school took additional safety measures upon returning, such as wellness checks and closed playground structures, to prevent further spread of the virus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have reported that nationwide, norovirus activity has been elevated since late January of this year. Reported cases are higher than the same time last year, with about 16 percent positive norovirus tests this year in contrast to last spring's 11 percent.

In case you experience vomiting, diarrhea, and nausea, report it now. It can help to detect & resolve outbreaks early and prevent others from being harmed, and it enables better surveillance. If symptoms persist, seek medical care.


#california #us #norovirus

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