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Successful control of norovirus outbreak in a pediatric ward with multi-bed rooms

Published:September 03, 2019DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2019.07.022

      Highlights

      • Ten patients were involved, with a cumulative incidence of 8.77%.
      • Symptoms lasted for 7.5 days, and norovirus shed in stool for 19.5 days.
      • The ward was closed to new admissions twice to contain the outbreak.

      Background

      Norovirus outbreaks in health care facilities are difficult to prevent and control.

      Methods

      We describe a norovirus outbreak that occurred in a single pediatric ward with multi-bed rooms.

      Results

      The outbreak began with 4 clustered cases with acute diarrhea in a pediatric ward between December 22 and 25, 2017. A total of 10 cases were identified during the outbreak, with a cumulative incidence of 8.77%. The median age of the cases was 10 months. Symptoms lasted for a median of 7.5 days, and norovirus shed in stool for a median of 19.5 days. The first 5 cases consecutively developed diarrhea; 4 of them were in the same room. The sixth case, which was linked with the clustered cases, had stayed in the intensive care unit and infected 3 other patients during the stay. After these 4 cases were transferred back to the ward, an additional patient was infected. Strict infection control measures were implemented, and the outbreak was successfully terminated 24 days after the initial case.

      Conclusions

      Controlling norovirus outbreak in a pediatric ward with multi-bed rooms is challenging. Early detection of the outbreak and prompt implementation of strict infection control measures are critical.

      Key Words

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