An outbreak of norovirus infection in a long-term care facility in Brazil
To describe a norovirus outbreak in a Brazilian long-term care facility from July 8 to 29, 2005.
In the first 48 to 72 hours after onset of symptoms in inpatients and employees, the main infection control strategies were staff education, emphasis on hand washing, implementing contact precautions up to 48-72 hours after resolution of symptoms, complete cleaning of the rooms and exclusion of symptomatic employees from work until 48-72 hours after resolution of their symptoms. Epidemiological and clinical characteristics of the norovirus infections were described based on chart review.
The incidence among inpatients and employees was 41.3% and 16.25%, respectively. The main symptom was diarrhea, affecting 100% of inpatients and employees. Forty-four percent of specimens were positive by RIDASCREEN® Norovirus analyses, and identified as norovirus genogroup GII. Seventy percent of inpatients were women and their age range was 51-98 years. Inpatients had in average two comorbid conditions – 87.3% with cardiovascular or chronic pulmonary condition and 47.6% with dementia. There was not relapse or death.
The early infection-control measures associated to surveillance are required to keep long-term care facilities free of noroviruses and to protect those who are most vulnerable.