Yosemite National Park: 170 people fell ill after probable norovirus outbreak


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Two of the cases are confirmed as norovirus, and most others are consistent with the virus, the park said in a statement on Thursday. Most incidents occurred around the first week of January and new cases have declined in recent days, the report said.

The park is investigating the circumstances surrounding the disease and is interviewing affected people. It also improved sanitation protocols to prevent the spread of the disease.

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Norovirus is the most common cause of acute gastroenteritis – often called stomach cancer – in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It causes about 21 million illnesses each year, mostly in crowded environments such as nursing homes and day care centers.

Causes inflammation in the stomach and intestines, leading to stomach aches, nausea and diarrhea. Symptoms include fever, headache and body aches, and usually last from one to three days.

Norovirus can spread in many ways, including through direct contact with an infected person, touching a contaminated surface or object, and consuming contaminated food or beverages.

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This can be avoided by washing your hands often with soap and avoiding sharing food and water with sick people. "If soap and water are not readily available, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol may be used," the park said.

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