Norovirus outbreak at UNC Chapel Hill postpones rush week – NoroCORE Food Virology

Norovirus outbreak at UNC Chapel Hill postpones rush week

The Old Well at UNC Chapel Hill, a university landmark. Photo taken by Caroline Culler and posted on Wikimedia Commons.

Classes began about two weeks ago at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and lately their student health center has been treating a number of students for norovirus-like illness.  We first heard of this story before the weekend, when samples had been sent off for laboratory testing and perhaps a dozen people were sick. There have now been three confirmed cases of norovirus at UNC and perhaps around 30 people who have been sick.

One university email said “a significant section of the Greek community” was experiencing norovirus-like symptoms.  It does appear that most of the affected individuals reside in the sorority houses near campus.  The sorority recruitment week was postponed by the university out of precaution, and is a time when the female students visit the different sorority houses.

The student body has also been given a list of instructions by Campus Health Services on how to prevent or manage gastrointestinal illness in general (not specific to norovirus). Some reports suggest the outbreak is slowing, and we will update this post if more information becomes available.

 

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