Q. What is Norovirus?

Norovirus is a virus that in most cases causes nausea or vomiting and diarrhoea. It can also cause abdominal pain, loss of taste, general lethargy, weakness, muscle aches, headaches or low grade fevers.

It is transferred from person to person by physical transmission, often due to an infected person not washing their hands properly and then touching items such as food utensils, door handles etc, which are then touched by someone else.

When a person becomes infected, the virus begins to multiply within the small intestine. After approximately 1 - 2 days, Norovirus symptoms can appear. These symptoms develop between 24 - 48 hours after exposure and last for around 24 - 60 hours.

When people on board are diagnosed with Norovirus, they are confined to their cabin so that they can recover and the risk of infecting other guests or crew is reduced. Rigorous cleaning procedures are carried out during and after outbreaks of Norovirus. Further information on these processes can be seen under "What processes are followed if an out break of an infectious disease such as Norovirus occurs on board?"

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