Call for hand washing with soap and water as norovirus outbreaks increase in east of England

Hand washing with a Teal Mediwash unit to prevent the spread of norovirus

66 percent increase in cases

Norovirus outbreaks – of the illness sometimes referred to as the “winter vomiting bug” – have increase by sixty six percent in March and April in the east of England, according to a recent report on the Cambridgeshire Live website.

Hannah Mirsky has written that Public Health England (PHE) has recently issued the advice.

Advice is given in the article about what to do if the illness is contracted, which amounts to little more that to “stay home and wait for it to go away, which usually takes about two days.”

Effective hand washing is key

Whilst riding out the illness provides a limited scope for a situation improvement, there is a great deal that can be done in order to prevent the virus from spreading wrote Ms Mirsky. And it seems that the best way of controlling norovirus is by a thorough wash with good old soap and water – not gels.

“Hand sanitiser gels don’t kill the germ, so the best way to protect yourself is by washing your hands regularly with soap and water.”

The report takes the hand hygiene message a step further, courtesy of advice from the deputy director of health protection at PHE East of England, Dr Jörg Hoffmann, which he reportedly offered ahead of the recent World Hand Hygiene Day.

“Washing your hands with soap and water can reduce the risk of diarrhoea by nearly 50 per cent so we can see that such a simple measure is a great way to stop people becoming unwell.”

Norovirus cases soar by 66 per cent in region »

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