Norovirus is actually a large group of contagious viruses known to cause serious gastroenteritis illnesses. This virus easily spreads between individuals through infection of specific foods and beverages or on contaminated food prep surfaces. Many individuals acquire norovirus from ready-to-eat products prepared by food workers, fresh produce or other food items that have been contaminated with vomit or feces from any individual infected with the illness.
Reports by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) indicate that the U.S. is experiencing a higher level of norovirus outbreaks compared to other countries because of new strains of the harmful virus. The virus was first named after an initial breakout of the viral infection that was recorded in Norwalk Ohio as stomach flu.
Nearly 23 million individuals in the U.S. suffer norovirus-caused gastroenteritis every year. The most common symptoms involved in a Norovirus infection include:
- Severe abdominal pain and cramping
- Sometimes low-grade fever or headache
Typically, individuals will first start noticing the signs of infection within one to two days after coming into contact with or ingesting contaminated water or food. The symptoms can last up to five days and cause significant issues including malnutrition, dehydration or possibly death. Young children and older adults tend to experience severe complications of the norovirus, as do any adults suffering a compromised immune system, especially those in nursing homes or hospitals.
Preventing an Infectious Outbreak
Treatment for the viral infection usually requires a replenishment of minerals and fluids because of depletion during vomiting or diarrhea. Preventing an outbreak of the infection is usually simple. Preventative steps include:
- Properly washing hands before and after eating, especially when consuming foods at catered events, on cruise ships or in schools, hospitals or nursing homes
- Disinfect all food preparation services or any area that might have come into contact with feces or vomit
- Properly discard any stool or vomitus
- Properly wash all raw vegetables completely before serving
- Only drink carbonated bottled beverages or boiled drinks while traveling
- Prevent anyone exposed to the norovirus in any place preparing meals
Generally, a norovirus outbreak occurs in crowded locations such as a university, college, long-term healthcare facility, hospitals and banquets. Out of the millions of foodborne illness cases occurring every year in the U.S., nearly half occur because of norovirus. Today, there is no viral prescription medication proven effective in treating the virus. As a result, only good hygiene practices serves as an effective solution for minimizing the potential of infection.
Filing of Food Poisoning Lawsuit
When individuals suffer injuries from an infection caused by the negligent actions of food preparers, they often hire a skilled norovirus food poisoning attorney to handle their case. A lawyer will file a food poisoning claim or lawsuit against any parties responsible for the outbreak. This could include individuals, companies or others involved in producing, packaging, storing, distributing, preparing or selling unsafe contaminated food products.
Other parties that can be held legally liable include food preparers at restaurants, cafeterias, hotels and other locations. The law firm will usually seek compensation by supporting the claim under numerous legal theories including negligence, defective product, strict liability and others.
Hiring a Lawyer to Prosecute a Norovirus Outbreak
If you, or a loved one, have suffered a norovirus foodborne illness caused by consuming contaminated foods and beverages you are likely entitled to pursue a case for compensation. By filing a legal claim and presenting the case in court or to a claims adjuster, you can recover losses including hospitalization, medical bills, missed wages, lost earning capacity, pain, suffering and other damages.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC represent victims of food poisoning including norovirus cases. Our law firm offers victims a free claim evaluation to discuss the merits of the case. Our team of attorneys is passionate about your well-being and health. We use our extensive negotiation skills to help you obtain a substantial out-of-court settlement and litigation experience to take your case to trial if necessary.
We invite you to call our law office is today at (888) 424-5757 to schedule an initial free of charge consultation. We will accept your case on contingency to eliminate the need of paying us any upfront fees. We receive payment for our services only after we obtain your settlement or jury award.