There are several ways in which a norovirus may be transmitted. For example, norovirus transmission may occur as a result of eating foods or drinking liquids that are contaminated with the virus. Transmission of a norovirus can also occur when someone touches contaminated surfaces and then touches his or her mouth. Workers at daycare centers and nursing homes should pay special attention to children or residents infected with a norovirus; transmission in such environments can lead to the virus spreading quickly among the population of such institutions.
Noroviruses are highly contagious and can spread easily from person to person. Noroviruses are found in the stool or vomit of infected people. Norovirus transmission can happen in one of several ways, including:
- Eating foods or drinking liquids that are contaminated with norovirus
- Touching surfaces or objects contaminated with norovirus and putting your hands in your mouth
- Having direct contact with another person who is infected and showing symptoms (for example, when caring for someone with the illness, or sharing food or eating utensils with someone who is ill).
People working in daycare centers or nursing homes should pay special attention to children or residents who have norovirus illnesses. This virus is highly contagious and can spread rapidly throughout such environments.
Anyone can become infected with a norovirus. There are many different strains of norovirus, which makes it difficult for a person's body to develop long-lasting immunity. Therefore, norovirus illness can recur throughout a person's lifetime. In addition, because of differences in genetic factors, some people are more likely to become infected and develop more severe forms of the illness than others. Recent evidence suggests that people with type O blood may be at greatest risk for severe infection.