Norovirus Sweeps Campuses

Hundreds of students made ill for days
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 7, 2008 2:22 AM CDT
Georgetown University. Some 192 students were struck by a norovirus, a type of illness common on cruise ships.   (©NCinDC)
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(Newser) – Noroviruses are sweeping US colleges, delivering severe cases of nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. The same crowded conditions which allow noroviruses to thrive on cruise ships give them free rein on campus, reports Inside Higher Ed. There have been recent outbreaks at Georgetown University, the University of Southern California and colleges in Oregon, Connecticut, Colorado, and New Jersey.

Colleges have tried to improve hygiene in student residences and commissaries, with limited effect. “Where it falls down is large crowded parties where there is close personal contact,” said the executive director of student health at the University of Virginia. Students who might not normally do so end up sharing drinking glasses or cigarettes.