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Whangarei norovirus outbreak over

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Whangarei norovirus outbreak over

The Norovirus outbreak at Whangarei Hospital's Ward 15 was declared over at 7pm last night following no further suspected cases. The outbreak began on 28 July.

In total there were ten people (six patients and four staff) with symptoms, two of these with laboratory confirmed Norovirus.

Dr Gloria Johnson, Northland DHB's chief medical advisor, said Norovirus symptoms usually appear 24 to 48 hours after becoming infected. We have been progressively opening sections of the ward as the signs of the design declined and waited a further 48 hours before declaring the outbreak over.

"Its now back to business for the hospital but we will continue to ask members of the public with viral gastroenteritis-like symptoms not to visit patients in hospital, or to call ahead for advice if they do need to visit, as we would like to keep this highly infectious illness out of our hospitals."

Ward 15 visitor restrictions have also been removed.

"I would just like to say thank members of the public for their response during the outbreak. Visitors to the ward and hospital generally engaged with our hygiene precautions positively," Dr Johnson said.

"Hand hygiene is one of the most effective ways you can protect yourself and your family against illnesses like Norovirus. I strongly encourage all members of the community to wash their hands regularly, using plenty of soap, cleaning under their fingernails, rinsing their hands and drying them thoroughly on a clean towel," said Dr Johnson

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