August 13, 2020

Norovirus Was a Contributing Cause of New Hampshire Death at Puritan Backroom

The New Hampshire Office of the Chief Examiner (OCME) has determined that norovirus was a contributing cause of death in a person who lived in Hillsborough county in that state. The unnamed person attended an event at the Puritan Backroom in Manchester, New Hampshire on November 24, 2019. The report was completed after an autopsy was conducted.

New Hampshire Person Died After Contracting Norovirus at Puritan Backroom

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services will not release any more information about the deceased person because of federal and state privacy laws, according to the OCME notice.

Eighteen people were allegedly sickened with norovirus after eating at the restaurants’ function hall the Sunday before Thanksgiving. The public was not informed about this outbreak at the time.

Norovirus is a contagious virus that causes diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and stomach pain, usually within 12 to 48 hours after exposure. Some people may experience fever, headache, and body aches. This illness usually resolves without medical attention in a few days. While deaths from norovirus are relatively rare, the virus does cause 570 to 800 deaths, 56,000 to 71,000 hospitalizations, 400,000 emergency department visits, 1.7 to 1.9 million outpatient visits, and 19 to 21 million total illnesses per year.

Norovirus is spread through person-to-person contact, through touching contaminated surfaces, or from eating or drinking contaminated food or water. There is no specific treatment for this virus.

To help stop the spread of norovirus, people should first always stay home from work or school and other events when they are sick, especially with a diarrheal illness. Always wash your hands well with soap and water after using the toilet, changing diapers, and before taking medicine, preparing food, or serving food to others.

There are many different types of norovirus, so if you get sick with this viral infection once, that infection may not protect you against other types. Scientists and doctors don’t know how long immunity against the virus may last.

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