An outbreak of viral gastroenteritis following environmental contamination at a concert hall

M. R. Evans*, R. Meldrum, W. Lane, D. Gardner, C. D. Ribeiro, Christopher Gallimore, D. Westmoreland

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    112 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    In January 1999, an outbreak of viral gastroenteritis affected more than 300 people who attended a metropolitan concert hall over a 5-day period. Norwalk-like virus (NLV) was confirmed in faecal samples by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction assay. The index case was a concert attendee who vomited in the auditorium and adjacent male toilet. Gastrointestinal illness occurred among members of 8/15 school parties who attended the following day. Children who sat on the same level of the auditorium as the index case were much more likely to be ill than those seated elsewhere (relative risk 7.1, 95% confidence interval 5.4-9.2, P < 0.001). The majority of other reported cases had not been present on the evening of the vomiting incident. Disinfection procedure was poor and the disinfectant used contained no sodium hypochlorite. Transmission most likely occurred through direct contact with contaminated fomites. The outbreak has implications for disinfection procedures following vomiting incidents at public venues.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)355-360
    Number of pages6
    JournalEpidemiology and Infection
    Volume129
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2002

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