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Norovirus nips nursing homes

March 09, 2009
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MAUI, HI — Two nursing homes on the island of Maui have been hit with an outbreak of norovirus, a highly contagious stomach virus with symptoms similar to that of the flu and whose eradication requires extensive cleaning of surfaces, according to KGMB-TV.
The virus first appeared at the Hale Makua nursing homes in Kahului and Wailuku three weeks ago, the story stated.
According to the story, an infected patient vomited at a party and spread the virus to some in attendance.
A total of eighty residents and staff were infected during the outbreak; all parties concerned have recovered and are no longer showing symptoms, the story noted.
Hale Makua staff member Tony Krieg said: "The problem with nursing homes and hospitals is they are public facilities that can''t be evacuated. Another thing is that you can spread the virus without symptoms, so it''s very hard to know where it comes from."
Hale Makua staff used a bleach cleaning solution to wipe down surfaces in both facilities to rid the virus that kills an estimated 300 people in the United States each year, the story added.
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