January 22, 2017 5:14 pm
Updated: January 22, 2017 7:24 pm

Toronto Public Health investigating possible norovirus outbreak at Humber College

WATCH ABOVE: Toronto Public Health says an outbreak at Humber College that has affected 200 people is likely norovirus. Erica Vella explains.


Toronto Public Health is looking into a possible norovirus outbreak that has affected more than 200 people at Humber College.

On Thursday, students on Humber College North Campus experienced “flu-like” symptoms and approximately 30 students were taken to hospital.

Toronto Public Health said Sunday that the symptoms are consistent with norovirus, although it’s not confirmed.

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“The virus does circulate in Toronto around this time of year,” said Dr. Michael Finkelstein, Toronto’s associate medical officer of health.

“Norovirus can be passed from person to person but it can also get into food. So, if there is an ill food handler, for instance, that can contaminate food. In the last couple of days we have tried to investigate where this might have come from.”

Humber College said they are working with Toronto Public Health to implement protocols that would help reduce the spread of the illness.

“We’ve implemented a series of response protocols including significant cleaning efforts that meet all of the standards set out by Toronto Public Health,” said Jen McMillen, Dean of Students with Humber College.

“We are asking people who have been ill, isolate yourselves and to stay away from campus up to 48 hours after they feel better.”

Toronto Public Health said tests are currently being done to confirm whether it is a norovirus outbreak and they will know in the coming week.

“When norovirus gets into a population that’s living in close quarters like this, you can get a lot of cases,” Finklestein said.

“The number one issue here is washing your hands and also not going to school if you’re sick, those are the two most important ways of trying to prevent spread of this virus.”

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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