Health protection – collection

Norovirus: guidance, data and analysis

The symptoms, diagnosis, management and epidemiology of norovirus.

Norovirus, also known as winter vomiting disease, causes gastroenteritis and is highly infectious. The virus is easily transmitted through contact with infected individuals from one person to another.

Outbreaks are common in semi-enclosed environments such as hospitals, nursing homes, schools and cruise ships and can also occur in restaurants and hotels.

The virus is usually mild and lasts for 1 to 2 days. Symptoms include vomiting, projectile vomiting, diarhorrea and fever. Most people make a full recovery within a couple of days but it can be dangerous for the very young and elderly people.

Epidemiology and surveillance

Norovirus is a frequent cause of outbreaks of gastroenteritis in NHS hospitals. Outbreaks are reported on the Hospital Norovirus Outbreak Reporting System (HNORS).

  1. Norovirus and rotavirus: summary of surveillance

    • Official Statistics
  2. Reported norovirus outbreaks in hospitals: suspected and laboratory-confirmed outbreaks in 2015

    • Research and analysis
  3. Norovirus: annual figures 2000 to 2012

    • Official Statistics