Click to Translate to English Click to Translate to French  Click to Translate to Spanish  Click to Translate to German  Click to Translate to Italian  Click to Translate to Japanese  Click to Translate to Chinese Simplified  Click to Translate to Korean  Click to Translate to Arabic  Click to Translate to Russian  Click to Translate to Portuguese


Forum Home Forum Home > General Discussion > Latest News
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - Norovirus Outbreak hits-Prisons-Crews Ships-Casino
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Online Discussion: Tracking new emerging diseases and the next pandemic

Norovirus Outbreak hits-Prisons-Crews Ships-Casino

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
Message
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Norovirus Outbreak hits-Prisons-Crews Ships-Casino
    Posted: January 30 2010 at 6:24am
http://www.statesman.com/blogs/content/shared-gen/blogs/austin/politics/entries/2010/01/25/stomach_flu_outbreak_hits_pris.html?cxntfid=blogs_postcards

In preparation for what may be another wave of flu coming- Where at least 90% of the cases appear to be norovirus- it is hitting the prisons with a vengeance.

Stomach flu outbreak hits prisons

By Mike Ward | Monday, January 25, 2010, 03:17 PM

Five prisons are under a form of medical quarantine because a highly contagious stomach flu has sickened more than 1,600 convicts and staff and appears to have spread to nearly a quarter of Texas’ state lockups, officials said today.

Jason Clark, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, said more than 11,000 offenders at five prisons where the outbreak of the suspected norovirus is worst are on medical restriction — meaning visitation and transfers to other units have been canceled.

In all, Clark said, offenders at 26 prisons and two halfway houses are experiencing symptoms of the illness — vomiting, diarrhea and stomach cramps.

Visitation by family and friends was canceled altogether at seven Texas prisons, and for parts of two others last weekend, officials said.

Noroviruses have made headlines in recent years for plaguing cruise ships, and putting them out of commission for extensive cleaning.

“We’re continuing to monitor the situation and are aggressively working to keep the illness from spreading further,” Clark said, noting that the first signs of the outbreak surfaced about three weeks ago at the Terrell Unit in Rosharon, southwest of Houston.

As of Friday, 611 of that prison’s 1,600 convicts had been felled by the virus. Forty-two of the 479 employees had also been sick, he said.

Other units on medical restriction in addition to Terrell included the 3,100-convict Michael Unit in Tennessee Colony, the 1,300-convict Stevenson Unit in Cuero, the 3,500-convict Estelle Unit outside Huntsville and the 1,400-convict Pack Unit in Navasota.

Clark said all but one housing unit at the historic Huntsville Unit — commonly known as “The Walls” — were on medical restriction, the Coffield Unit in Tennessee Colony had 10 housing units on restriction and 19 other state lockups had varying numbers of inmates reported sick with gastrointestinal illnesses — some confirmed as norovirus.

In an unusual step, officials also have canceled routine transfers of convicts to the prison hospital in Galveston “to keep the this from spreading there,” Clark said. “No one has had to be hospitalized yet. We’re aggressively disinfecting the common areas to check the spread.

“It’s a fast-moving virus.”

Clark and other prison administrators said medical officials believe the current outbreak is caused by the norovirus organism linked to 90 percent of non-bacterial gastroenteritis epidemics worldwide.

Prison officials said the illness typically runs its course in 24 to 72 hours, and all convicts are being actively treated for their symptoms.

Clark said convicts are being restricted to their cells in an attempt to prevent the illness from spreading — through person-to-person contact, through contaminated food or water or via contaminated surfaces.

Statistics from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that about 300 people die from the illness annually. Such victims generally are young or old or suffer from a compromised immune system.

comment: for those older or with a compromised immune system this is not as merciful as the elder avoiding Swine Flu. 

People cannot be contagious 2 weeks after they recover from stomach flu.

http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvrd/revb/gastro/norovirus-qa.htm

Therefore the urban legend if a child is asymptomatic they not contagious after they have had the flu is often false.

We have generally seen NO EFFORT at all by parents with sick children or especially children who have been sick with norovirus make any effort to help protect others. They do not keep their children home from school or often even practice the most basic hand washing and sanitation. Groups of children play in pre-schools and thus the highly contagious virus spreads.

CDC says:

Are noroviruses contagious?
Noroviruses are very contagious and can spread easily from person to person. Both stool and vomit are infectious. Particular care should be taken with young children in diapers who may have diarrhea.How long are people contagious?

People infected with norovirus are contagious from the moment they begin feeling ill to at least 3 days after recovery. Some people may be contagious for as long as 2 weeks after recovery. Therefore, it is particularly important for people to use good handwashing and other hygienic practices after they have recently recovered from norovirus illness.

Is there a treatment for "stomach flu" - Norovirus? None.

CDC says:

Is there a treatment for norovirus infection?
There is no vaccine to prevent norovirus infection. And there is no drug to treat people who are infected with the virus. Antibiotic drugs will not help if you have norovirus infection. This is because they fight against bacteria not viruses.


Medclinician





Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2010 at 6:26am
How long have they known about this wave of outbreaks of stomach flu? For almost a week. has there been any national health effort or focus on the problem? No.



Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2010 at 6:33am
Is this new stomach flu spreading globally- perhaps. - Hong Kong origin- possibly.

http://article.wn.com/view/2010/01/24/Severe_stomach_virus_hits_Tuen_Mun_Hospital_wards/

Seven patients in a rehabilitation ward at Tuen Mun Hospital have come down with noroviral infection, a type of acute stomach flu, in the past week. //--> MaryAnnBenitez Monday, January 25, 2010 Seven patients in a rehabilitation ward at Tuen Mun Hospital have come down with noroviral infection, a type of acute stomach flu, in the past week. The latest, a woman,...

Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2010 at 6:43am
January 11, 2010

Update: Norovirus Strikes Again: Cunard Ship May be Turned Away from U.S.
Queen%20Victoria (3:35 p.m. EST) -- Update: Cruise Critic contributor Ted Scull, who was onboard the crossing, reports that Queen Victoria did indeed dock in New York today at noon, and passengers were allowed off the ship. A spokesman for the CDC tells us that as of Sunday at 3:41 p.m., Queen Victoria reported 163 passengers with cases of gastrointestinal illness (that's 8.7 percent of the 1,874 passengers onboard), as well as seven sick crewmembers. The ship first notified the CDC of a possible Norovirus outbreak on January 7 when the number of ill passengers passed the two percent threshold.

(January 10, 3:30 p.m. EST) -- Another outbreak of Norovirus has been reported, this time aboard Cunard's luxury Queen Victoria, which is sailing an eight-night transatlantic voyage from Southampton to New York.

According to the U.K.'s Daily Mail, there is a chance that the ship may be denied permission to dock in New York if the number of ill passengers reaches an epidemic level -- 15 percent or more of the ship's occupants. The ship is currently scheduled to arrive in New York earlier than planned, on January 11 midday rather than January 12.

Cunard spokesperson Jackie Chase confirmed that there are several sick passengers but was unable to say how many, exactly, have come down with the gastrointestinal virus, which causes nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and possibly headaches, fevers and abdominal cramps. Ted Scull, a Cruise Critic contributor, is onboard Queen Victoria and says that there have been no reports that the ship will not dock in New York.

Earlier this week, the virus made appearances aboard Holland America's Noordam and, most recently, Royal Caribbean's new giant, Oasis of the Seas. Two of U.K.-based Fred. Olsen's ships, Balmoral and Boudicca, were also plagued by the virus during recent Christmas and New Year's sailings.

Efforts to reach the Center for Disease Control and the port of New York for comment weren't immediately successful, but we'll keep you posted.

--by Ashley Kosciolek, Copy Editor
Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2010 at 6:50am
Has this been in the headlines and do we have a problem with Norovirus (Stomach flu) and secondly didn't 40% of the cases in one stain present at cases with GI trat  involvemnt.

Norovirus is becoming a significant occurence to the degrees tthat die. . Are we going to see a lack of transparency and reporting in main stream for Norovirus?
Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2010 at 6:52am

It's Officially Norovirus Season Aboard Cruise Ships

January 13, 2010 at 4:25 PM | by JetSetCD | 0 Comments

With travelers heading south for the winter and hopping aboard much-anticpated cruises where they eat at communal buffets and are trapped in the same boat as thousands of others, it's no wonder that Norovirus is popping up in the news again. Most recently, the stomach bug hit Cunard Line's massive Queen Victoria while she was off sailing an eight-night transatlantic voyage from Southhampton to New York.

Because the United States has a policy that bars ships from entering a US post if the passengers with Norovirus go over 15% of the ship's populations—an epidemic level&#!51;fears were high on the Queen Victoria that she wouldn't be allowed to dock. However, CruiseCritic reports that only 163 passengers came down with it, equalling "8.7 percent of the 1,874 passengers onboard."

Still, 163 people (and seven crew) coming down with the same terribly vacation-ruining bug is cause for alarm. CruiseCritic also reminds us that is far from the first major outbreak of the winter season:

Earlier this week, the virus made appearances aboard Holland America's Noordam and, most recently, Royal Caribbean's new giant, Oasis of the Seas. Two of U.K.-based Fred. Olsen's ships, Balmoral and Boudicca, were also plagued by the virus during recent Christmas and New Year's sailings

Gross. Cruise lines may be able to throw tons of money into television and magazine advertising to sway people in making vacation decisions, but no amount of money can immediately guarantee their sick tummies will feel better, nor guarantee the Norovirus won't happen again.

Related Stories:
· Norovirus Strikes Again: Cunard Ship May Be Turned Away from US [CruiseCritic]
· 60 Sick on Swine Flu Cruise Off French Riviera [Jaunted]
· The Handshake: Travel's Newest Enemy [Jaunted]

[Photo: AFP/Telegraph UK]

Medclinician
Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2010 at 6:54am
TODAY

Saturday, January 30, 2010
  Winston-Salem

Casino is sanitizing hourly to battle outbreak of norovirus

ADVERTISEMENT

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Published: January 23, 2010

CHEROKEE

Workers are cleaning slot machines with bleach every two hours as a North Carolina casino battles a virus that has sickened nearly 250 people.

Harrah's Cherokee Casino and Hotel is wiping down its 3,300 slot machines with a bleach and water mix around the clock. The outbreak since Jan. 12 has caused intestinal troubles including vomiting and diarrhea.

Door knobs, escalator handrails and restrooms are being sanitized hourly.

Casino spokesman Charles Pringle says that the culprit is a norovirus that is sometimes a problem on cruise ships and at schools.

The casino remains safe to visit because relatively few of the 7,500 daily visitors have gotten sick, state epidemiologist David Bergmire-Sweat said. The virus is more contagious than the common flu, and is spread by touching surfaces that infected people have touched, he said.

The 11-year-old casino is in the midst of an expansion to double the casino floor, add a third hotel tower, and build more parking decks and retail space. The complex is owned by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and operated by Las Vegas-based Harrah's Entertainment Inc.

Aggressive cleaning has slowed the outbreak, said Dr. Martha Salyers of the state's regional public health surveillance team.

Medclinician


Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 30 2010 at 7:22am
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1240648/Cursed-Hundreds-stricken-stomach-bug-hits-luxury-liner-times-weeks.html

Cursed! Hundreds stricken as bug hits luxury liner three times in three weeks


By Claire Ellicott
Last updated at 1:24 AM on 05th January 2010

A luxury cruise liner has been hit by three outbreaks of the winter vomiting bug in as many weeks.

A total of 519 passengers have fallen ill with norovirus during three cruises on the Boudicca, despite its owners insisting the ship was free from the virus.

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines said the vessel had been deep-cleaned twice following the outbreaks, but the virus has also returned to plague passengers at least twice.

Boudicca:%20In%20the%20last%20three%20cruises,%20norovirus%20has%20hit%20519%20passengers

Boudicca: In the last three cruises, norovirus has hit 519 passengers

Three people also died during the last cruise, though the company said their deaths were not connected to the virus.

Derek and Marina Eaton were among those confined to their cabins after contracting the virus on the last cruise.

The couple paid £10,155 for a 14-night Christmas cruise to Madeira and the Canaries staying in the ship's most expensive suite.

But Mrs Eaton, 70, a retired manager, described it as the 'cruise from hell'. 

On the initial 12-day cruise to the Canaries, which departed from Portsmouth on December 6, 180 of the 800 passengers aboard fell ill.

The firm said that when the 28,000-ton ship returned to Portsmouth on December 18, it was deep-cleaned and was free from the virus.

Later that day, it departed on a four-day mini-cruise to Amsterdam. Around 50 of the 827 passengers were then diagnosed with the stomach bug.

Again when the Boudicca returned, the company said it would be thoroughly cleaned and the next cruise departed for Madeira on December 22 as scheduled.

Victims:%20Derek%20and%20Marina%20Eaton%20spent%20four%20days%20in%20their%20cabin%20after%20falling%20ill

Victims: Derek and Marina Eaton spent four days in their cabin after falling ill

This time, 289 of the 795 passengers were diagnosed with the stomach bug and the ship - which can carry up to 900 passengers - returned to Portsmouth yesterday, a day early. It will now undergo three days of intensive cleaning.

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines has blamed infected passengers for bringing the virus aboard.

The latest outbreak would be the seventh time in the past year that one of firm's fleet has been hit by the illness.

There was another outbreak on the Boudicca in October.

Mr Eaton, 75, a company owner, from Woburn Sands in Bedfordshire, said he and his wife had been looking forward to spending New Year's Eve in Madeira to see the island's fireworks display, which is said to be the largest in the world.

But after falling ill, they spent the night confined to their cabin and missed the display.

They had to spend a total of four days in their cabin and missed three of the six islands on the cruise.

Mr Eaton said: 'The management of the company should have cancelled the cruise once the first set of passengers fell ill.

'I don't believe for one second that they deep-cleaned the ship because there wasn't sufficient time.'

Noroviruses - a group of viruses - are the most common cause of gastroenteritis (vomiting and diarrhoea) and affect up to one million in Britain every year.

A company spokesman said it would refund passengers for returning from the cruise a day early. It also offered each passenger £100 for the inconvenience.

But there will be no compensation for days lost due to sickness.

'Throughout every cruise great attention is paid on a daily basis to the hygiene and cleanliness of the vessel,' she said.

'At the end of each cruise where there were a number of gastro cases a programme of deep cleaning and disinfection was carried out, with subsequent departures delayed as necessary.'

More than 250 passengers on another Fred Olsen vessel - the Balmoral - have also fallen ill with norovirus.

The ship left Dover for the Canary Islands on December 21 with 1,350 passengers and is due to return today. A spokesman said it would be deep-cleaned in one day.

There were also outbreaks of norovirus on the Balmoral last February when 200 fell ill and in September when 78 caught the virus.

Medclinician


Read more

Back to Top
Medclinician View Drop Down
Senior Advisor Group
Senior Advisor Group
Avatar
Member Since December, 2005

Joined: July 08 2009
Status: Offline
Points: 22632
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Medclinician Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: January 31 2010 at 5:28am

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan 24 (Reuters) - More than 300 passengers and crew aboard the Queen Elizabeth 2 were struck by a suspected stomach flu in recent days, U.S. health officials said on Wednesday after the world famous cruise ship docked in San Francisco.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it was notified by Cunard Line, owner of the Queen Elizabeth 2, on Jan. 11 that some passengers had fallen ill with symptoms associated with norovirus, a virus responsible for gastroenteritis marked by stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea that last two to three days.

The number of sick passengers climbed to 276, from a total 1,652, and 28 of the ship's 1,002 crew also became ill, said Lisa Beaumier, public health analyst with the CDC.

While their symptoms were consistent with norovirus, health officials continue to study stool samples, Beaumier said.

U.S. health officials boarded the Queen Elizabeth 2 in Acapulco, Mexico on Friday to investigate the outbreak. Its crew responded with increased cleaning and disinfection measures.

A Cunard Line spokesman in an e-mail to Reuters said all but six passengers sickened during the outbreak have recovered.

Norovirus is highly contagious and infection is common this time of year.

Nearly 400 passengers and crew were sickened by a common stomach virus on a Caribbean cruise aboard Royal Caribbean's (RCL.N) Freedom of the Seas, the world's largest cruise ship, the company said in early December.

Medclinician
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down