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Suspected Norovirus Outbreak at Glasgow Hotel

July 18, 2010 11:12 AM

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An outbreak control team has met this evening after a number of guests and staff at the Hilton Glasgow became unwell.

Twenty-four guests and 14 members of staff developed a sudden onset of diarrhoea and vomiting – thought to be caused by Norovirus.

Two guests were admitted to Gartnavel General Hospital earlier today. Both adult guests are in a stable condition, are responding well to treatment and expected to make a complete recovery.

All symptomatic staff are remaining at home until well.

Fifteen previously symptomatic guests are now well and have returned home. The remaining seven symptomatic guests have been asked to stay in their rooms so as to limit any potential spread of the illness.

Public health specialists and Glasgow City Council Environmental Health Officers have assessed the situation and have put in place a broad range of measures alongside Hilton’s own health and safety procedures to contain the illness.

Dr Anne Scoular, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde Public Health Consultant and Chair of the Outbreak Control Team said: “The clinical presentation of these guests and staff is very suggestive of Norovirus infection. Samples from those who are symptomatic have been sent for laboratory confirmation and we await the results.

“Norovirus infection is a common viral illness present throughout the community and can spread rapidly in areas with a high concentration of people such as hotels, cruise ships, hospitals and schools.

“We will continue our investigations to confirm the cause of the illness at the hotel and will monitor the situation very closely.

“Our advice to those guests in the hotel who are not symptomatic and to those who are due to check in is the same as it is for any community case - to follow strict hygiene rules such as regular hand washing.

“We are satisfied with the precautions that have now been put in place to limit the spread of the illness. The hotel is still operational, with the exception of the hotel swimming pool which is currently undergoing additional sanitisation as a precautionary measure and is expected to open tomorrow.

“I would advise anyone who has either stayed or worked at the hotel or used its facilities and is experiencing either diarrhoea and/or vomiting and a fever to contact NHS24 on 0845 4 242424.

“A number of precautions have been undertaken by Hilton as part of its own health and safety procedures, such as a programme of extensive cleaning using anti-viral agents in a variety of areas to limit the spread of the illness. All the appropriate infection control measures that we would expect are in place.

“This cleaning programme will continue to be implemented on a rolling basis to ensure that everything possible is being done to limit the spread of the illness. This will be monitored by Environmental Health Officers.

“Staff at the Hilton have been exemplary in their cooperation with us and we are grateful to them for their help.”

The outbreak control team will meet again tomorrow morning after which an updated media statement will be issued.

ENDS

Notes to editors

The outbreak control team includes representation from NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC), Health Protection Scotland and Glasgow City Council’s Environmental Health Department.

Issued by NHSGGC Press Office on 0141 201 4429.

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