Statement from DPH on the Recent Norovirus Outbreak Involving a Food Service Establishment in Ellington
The following is a statement from the Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) on the recent outbreak of gastrointestinal illness involving a food service establishment in Ellington:
DPH’s Epidemiology and Food Protection Programs, along with the State Laboratory, are collaborating with the North Central District Health Department in the investigation of an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness involving Gerry’s Donuts in Ellington that has now been confirmed through laboratory tests to be caused by norovirus. Norovirus is a very contagious virus that causes vomiting and diarrhea. People of all ages can get infected and sick with norovirus. When a norovirus outbreak involves multiple persons from different towns, as is the case with this outbreak, it is not uncommon to see additional cases of norovirus occur because of person-to-person transmission of the virus in the community.
In general, you can help protect yourself and others from norovirus by washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water. You should also avoid preparing food for others, working in a day care center, health care facility or food service establishment if you have gastrointestinal symptoms – vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, low grade fever – and seek medical attention if those symptoms become severe. This is the second foodborne outbreak of norovirus reported to DPH in 2021 and a reminder of the importance of preventing foodborne illnesses. Between 2015 - 2019, an average of 10 norovirus foodborne outbreaks were reported to DPH each year. In 2020, there were three, all occurring between January - first week of March.