Recent Outbreaks

Norwalk among Hurricane Katrina Victims
After the Hurricane hit Louisiana, many people evacuated New Orleans and went to Houston, Texas.  Approximately, 24,000 evacuees were given shelter in Relient Park, a sports and convention complex.  During September 2nd-12th approximately 1,169 visited the medical clinic in Relient Park with symptoms of acute gastroenteritis.  Forty-four stool samples were then analyzed and 50% of them were found to have norovirus.  Despite public health measures, the outbreak continued until the evacuees left Relient Park in late September.

MMWR Weekly. October 14th, 2005/ 54(40); 1016-1018

Outbreak in Japan Linked to Packed Lunches
In December 2004, ninety-one Japanese men and women in Osaka came down with acute gastroenteritis.  Lab analysis of twenty-three samples detected norovirus in all but two of the samples.  Subsequent epidemiological work found that all of the people who became ill had recently eaten a boxed lunch from a particular catering company.  Further investigations found several staff members from the catering company to also test positive for norovirus.

Sakon N, Yamazaki K, Yoda T, Kanki M, Otake T, Tsukamoto T. 2005. A norovirus outbreak of gastroenteritis linked to packed lunches. Jpn J Infect Dis. 58(4):253.