Bonneville Academy administrators sent a letter to parents Monday informing them that a single confirmed case of norovirus had occurred at the school.
Bonneville Academy is a public charter school in Stansbury Park for students in kindergarten through eighth grade.
“Norovirus is an extremely infectious virus that causes vomiting and diarrhea, which can affect a large group of people in a short period of time,” according to the letter.
“The virus is spread by coming into contact with sick individuals, and can even be spread by smelling the vomit of someone who is sick,” the letter said. “Local health departments are asking parents of children who have become sick to not send children to school until three days after symptoms of the virus have ended. This includes siblings.”
The letter stated that the outbreak started in Utah County and made its way to Salt Lake and now Tooele County.
Tooele County Health Department sent out its own news release Monday afternoon about an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness in surrounding counties.
Hillary Bryan, public information officer, said the department has received a few calls about norovirus.
“Although the letter sent out by Bonneville stated they received information on a confirmed case of norovirus, the Tooele County Health Department has not received any of lab confirmed cases,” Bryan said.
Norovirus (also known as Norwalk and Norwalk-like virus) is a viral infection and is a common cause of diarrhea and vomiting sickness in the United States, according to information provided by the health department
The news release explained that because the illness has spread so quickly, it is necessary for parents to watch their children for signs and symptoms.
“If your child becomes ill, prompt medical attention or treatment may help resolve the infection,” according to the new release. “It may be necessary to keep him/her at home until the symptoms resolve or until your child receives treatment.
“If your child has any of the symptoms of norovirus, we ask that you do not send him/her to school until 72 hours after vomiting and diarrhea have ended. Even if they just have an upset stomach, please keep them home while they are feeling ill, as it is possible that they may vomit while at school,” the release said.
Other symptoms include headache and low-grade fever.
Persons with norovirus usually recover within two to three days without serious or long-term health effects. Even though the virus is easily spread, serious illness rarely occurs, according to information provided by the health department.
Those who have questions about norovirus should contact the Tooele County Health department at 435-277-2310.