Ohio outbreaks due to norovirus via food

Two foodborne illness outbreaks in Granville, Ohio during the past two weeks have been blamed on norovirus.

Test results from an Ohio Department of Health laboratory found Norovirus in samples from both an outbreak resulting from a catered Feb. 12 event at Bryn Du Mansion and from a separate incident among students at Denison University.

Licking County Health Commissioner Joe Ebel told the Newark Advocate in an interview an investigation will be conducted into whether or not the two incidents could be related.?? Ebel said Tuesday that 41 of 78 people who attended the Bryn Du event, put on by the Columbus Museum of Art, experienced a gastrointestinal illness. He said most of those attending were from Franklin County, but one test sample returned from the lab involved a Licking County resident.

??In Thursday’s health department announcement, Ebel said 36 Denison students and two staff members were affected by the outbreak there, which occurred gradually over about the past 10 days. ??“Usually in a school setting like that, once it gets started it’s hard to get stopped." Dr. Charles J. Marty, medical director for Denison University Health Services, said in an emailed statement Thursday that DU community members have been advised to report any illness however slight, wash hands often and avoid sharing food or beverages.