BRUNSWICK COUNTY — Reports of a gastrointestinal virus are arising at the West Brunswick Evacuation Shelter.
A number of evacuees staying at the shelter, temporarily being housed at West Brunswick High School, have reported similar symptoms to officials.
One case has been confirmed as positive, one as negative, and two others are still pending according to county spokesperson Amanda Hutcheson.
According to a county release, the Brunswick County Health Department and shelter staff are “immediately instituting enhanced cleaning methods and necessary measures.”
Norovirus is can be found in stool and vomit. It’s highly contagious, the county release states, and is spread by improper hand hygiene.
The county urges evacuees to wash hands with soap and water after using the toilet, changing diapers and before handling food.
Symptoms of Norovirus appear as early as 12 hours after initial exposure and include:
- Abdominal cramps
- Low-grade fever or none at all
Though the symptoms typically wear off after a couple of days, the virus can still be contagious for up to two weeks, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More information on the virus, that leaves no long-term health effects related to the illness, can be found here.
With 33 evacuees currently staying at South Brunswick High School, the alternative shelter has “plenty of room,” Hutcheson said.
More information on the county’s available shelters can be found here.
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