Unlike the summer, when food is easily spoiled due to warm temperatures, the recent food poisoning is due to norovirus. Norovirus is often called the “winter vomiting bug or stomach flu” because it’s more common in winter, although you can catch it at any time of the year. The colder it is, the more it thrives. This virus is highly contagious and can spread quickly.

According to the KCDC (Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), there were 226 Norovirus infection cases between Dec.4 and 10, 2016 double the previous year.

What are the symptoms?

  • Suddenly feeling sick.
  • Projectile vomiting.
  • Watery diarrhea.
  • Some people also have a slight fever, headaches, stomachache cramps and aching limbs.

The symptoms appear one or two days after you become infected and typically last for up to two or three days.

How is it spread?

  • Through contaminated food and water.
  • By contact with objects touched by infected people.
  • Contact with infected people.

How is the virus treated?

  • Drink plenty of fluid to avoid dehydration: You need to drink more than usual to replace the fluids lost from vomiting and diarrhea.
  • You can take a Tylenol for any fever or aches and pain.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • If you feel like eating, eat plain foods such as soup, rice, pasta and bread.

How do you prevent Norovirus infection?

  • Stay home until at least 24 hours after the symptoms have passed.
  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water.
  • Disinfect any surfaces or objects that could be contaminated.
  • Flush away any infected poo or vomit in the toilet and clean the surrounding area.
  • Avoid eating raw foods such as oysters and fish, and thoroughly rinsing fruits and vegetables.

According to KCDC, 40% of viral infections occur from November to February. The virus spread through infected food or physical contact with an infected person. The best way to prevent the spread of the virus is wash your hands with soap and water. Good hand hygiene is important and effective in preventing the spread of the virus.

Stay healthy and Happy Lunar new year!!



Heejung Hwang
School Nurse