What are Noroviruses?

Noroviruses are one of the most common causes of gastroenteritis (stomach bugs). In the past, noroviruses have also been called “winter vomiting viruses”, “small round structured viruses” or “Norwalk-like viruses”. They belong to a group of viruses called “caliciviruses”.

What are the symptoms of Norovirus infection?

Symptoms include:

  • Nausea (often sudden onset)
  • Vomiting
  • Watery diarrhoea

How does Norovirus spread?

People can become infected with the virus in several ways, including:

  • Contact with an infected person e.g. when caring for someone with norovirus infection
  • Contact with contaminated surfaces or objects and then touching their mouth or muccous membranes
  • In hospitals, healthcare workers and hospital visitors can spread the virus to other patients or contaminate surfaces through hand contact
  • Consuming contaminated food or water