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Published On: Wed, May 28th, 2014

Suspected norovirus strikes CDC office, dozens sickened

An gastrointestinal outbreak has sickened dozens of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) employees  this week, prompting a call to local health officials, according to a AJC.com report today.

The employees, many with the CDC’s National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, are not actually on the CDC campus, but a building in DeKalb County called Century Center.

Norovirus Image/CDC

Norovirus
Image/CDC

A CDC spokesman said  “more than three or four dozen” employees have come down with an illness, with the first wave hitting on Friday. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page.

Although the exact etiology of the outbreak has not been ascertained, it is reportedly “behaving like a norovirus”. CDC was working to clean the building to the extent possible and was also having the water tested and working with DeKalb County to try to identify what may have caused the outbreak, the report notes.

Norovirus is a highly contagious viral illness that often goes by other names, such as viral gastroenteritis, stomach flu, and food poisoning.

The symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and some stomach cramping. Sometimes people additionally have a low-grade fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, and a general sense of tiredness. The illness often begins suddenly, and the infected person may feel very sick. In most people, the illness is self-limiting with symptoms lasting for about 1 or 2 days. In general, children experience more vomiting than adults do.

Norovirus is spread person to person particularly in crowded, closed places. Norovirus is typically spread through contaminated food andwater, touching surfaces or objects contaminated with norovirus and then putting your hand or fingers in your mouth and close contact with someone who is vomiting or has diarrhea.

Norovirus causes more than 20 million illnesses annually, and it is the leading cause of gastroenteritis outbreaks in the United States.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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