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Norovirus likely the cause of outbreak linked to Wild Ginger in Bellevue

Officials with Public Health — Seattle & King County are reporting a likely norovirus outbreak associated with the Wild Ginger restaurant in Bellevue, WA. To date, nine cases have been identified.

Image/CDC

On December 26, 2017, Public Health learned of 5 ill persons with symptoms of nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea from one meal party that became ill after consuming food and beverage from the restaurant on December 22. They have since identified 4 employees who experienced similar symptoms dating back to December 21.

The etiology of the gastroenteritis has not been confirmed; however, health officials say the symptoms are suggestive of norovirus.

Often in norovirus outbreaks, no laboratory testing is done. The exact food or drink item that caused the illness has not been identified, though this is not uncommon for norovirus outbreaks where multiple food items may be contaminated.

The following public health actions have been taken:

Environmental Health investigators visited the restaurant on December 26. During the field visit, investigators did not identify any risk factors that could contribute to the spread of norovirus, however they did observe other violations related to improper hot and cold holding of foods.

The restaurant is working cooperatively with Public Health and began a thorough cleaning and sanitizing of the restaurant on December 26.

Environmental Health investigators revisited the restaurant on December 27 to ensure that proper cleaning and sanitizing of the restaurant was completed and that all violations had been corrected.

Environmental Health investigators revisited the restaurant again on December 29 to ensure employees are maintaining a high level of hand hygiene and not working while ill.

Ill staff will be required to remain out until they are symptom-free for at least 48 hours.

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