Health officials at Buncombe County Health and Human Services (BC HHS) received confirmation Tuesday that specimens submitted for testing at the NC State Lab of Public Health were confirmed to be positive for norovirus.
BC HHS staff have been working with a local school who has been particularly hard hit with this illness, and we have been treating this as norovirus since the beginning. This confirmation won’t change the recommendations we have shared for controlling the outbreak.
It is important for the public to understand that Norovirus is not just in our schools – it is in our community. We need to work together to protect our most vulnerable populations, children in child care centers and elderly adults in adult care facilities.
The Asheville Citizen-Times reported in Wednesday’s edition that the confirmation was for tests on students at Isaac Dickson Elementary last week.
Asheville school officials now worry the illness has spread to Asheville High, the newspaper reported. They say 164 Asheville High and SILSA students were either absent or had to leave school early Tuesday due to illness. Several staff members were also sick Tuesday.
On a typical day, fewer than 100 students would be out sick, according to Charlie Glazener, spokesman for Asheville City Schools.