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-   -   Just how common is Noro Virus? (http://www.cruisemates.com/forum/royal-caribbean-international/393897-just-how-common-noro-virus.html)

banshee72 December 31st, 2012 09:41 AM

Just how common is Noro Virus?
 
It seems that every other reviewer has said that there was Noro on their ship. Is it really that prevelant? I worry about it even though it is something that is beyond my control. I dont get sick. eriously, I think the only time I was sick in the last 10 years is one time when I picked up strep throat from one of our boys. I just worry that one of us will pick it up and it will ruin our trip.

Trip December 31st, 2012 09:56 AM

The percentage of the effected passengers on the ships, on the news now, is a small percentage of the total passengers oboard. The news makes it sound as if the Noro is rampant. Concientously washing of hands and basically following the normal protocol one does, when ill is needed.

When people are diagnoised they are confined too their cabin,and the buffets have the crew serve, rather then the passengers using the utensils. Some reports discourage eating at the buffets in general.

In over 25 cruises, we have not been effected.Hopefully you won't either. If by chance you hear of any illness onboard, just take extra sanitary precautions.

felix_the_cat December 31st, 2012 10:27 AM

Wash your hands - wash your hands - wash your hands.

I can't count the number of times I have seen women/children use the bathroom and walk directly out the door without washing their hands. It's disgusting. I will not use the public washrooms on a ship if I can get back to my cabin first. I've been told by my husband it's worse in the men's washrooms.

Apparently the CDC requires a report when 3% of the shipboard complement are diagnosised with Noro. Of course there are always a lot who won't self report because they don't want to be quaranteed.

Usually, if you are careful, you should be OK. Wash your hands, avoid places where people are coughing etc, use a sleeve, kleenex or whatever to push elevator buttons, be mindful of the handrails when going up and down the stairs, don't touch food that has been "manhandled" ahead of you.

Lakers Fan December 31st, 2012 11:17 AM

Hmmm
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by felix_the_cat (Post 1459996)
Wash your hands - wash your hands - wash your hands.

I can't count the number of times I have seen women/children use the bathroom and walk directly out the door without washing their hands. It's disgusting. I will not use the public washrooms on a ship if I can get back to my cabin first. I've been told by my husband it's worse in the men's washrooms.

Apparently the CDC requires a report when 3% of the shipboard complement are diagnosised with Noro. Of course there are always a lot who won't self report because they don't want to be quaranteed.

Usually, if you are careful, you should be OK. Wash your hands, avoid places where people are coughing etc, use a sleeve, kleenex or whatever to push elevator buttons, be mindful of the handrails when going up and down the stairs, don't touch food that has been "manhandled" ahead of you.

I've yet to come down with a virus on a ship .I have never pushed an elevator button with anything other than a finger and have never used anything but my hand to use a handrail .I do use Purell.

I'm sure you do not use gloves to handle currency .I think its more likely to come in contact with germs that way.

Dave Beers December 31st, 2012 11:19 AM

While the CDC requires cruise lines to report Noro outbreaks, it has no such requirement for hotels, restaurants, spas, resorts. Thus the news is skewed.

Some cruise lines go crazy with making passengers use hand sanitizer, but it is no where near as effective as the others said, frequent washing of hands with soap and water - and for at least 30 seconds. It really annoys me to see the slobs who don't wash after using the restroom.

I also do not use my finger tips on elevator buttons. I press with the middle joints of fingers.

Lakers Fan December 31st, 2012 11:22 AM

Washing
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dave Beers (Post 1460005)
While the CDC requires cruise lines to report Noro outbreaks, it has no such requirement for hotels, restaurants, spas, resorts. Thus the news is skewed.

Some cruise lines go crazy with making passengers use hand sanitizer, but it is no where near as effective as the others said, frequent washing of hands with soap and water - and for at least 30 seconds. It really annoys me to see the slobs who don't wash after using the restroom.

I also do not use my finger tips on elevator buttons. I press with the middle joints of fingers.


I have been to bathrooms at the United Nations and have viewed people not washing their hands .

Mike M December 31st, 2012 11:22 AM

Even though cruise ships get the greatest publicity when norovirus occurs it is not the most common place to contract it. You are far more likely to contract it in daily life.

Here is an interesting CDC chart:

http://www.cdc.gov/features/dsnorovi..._379px.jpg.jpg

The key is to "WASH YOUR HANDS"

Take care,
Mike

Dave Beers December 31st, 2012 01:06 PM

Interesting chart. I suspect one reason for LTACs having 59% is that most of their patients have weakened immune systems.

Here is some more perspective on Norovirus.

Phil&Liz December 31st, 2012 01:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dave Beers (Post 1460005)
While the CDC requires cruise lines to report Noro outbreaks, it has no such requirement for hotels, restaurants, spas, resorts. Thus the news is skewed..


YES! Thank you for pointing that out! So many see it as a cruise ship illness only and that is because only the cruise ships make the news!

Phil&Liz December 31st, 2012 01:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mike M (Post 1460008)

Here is an interesting CDC chart:

http://www.cdc.gov/features/dsnorovi..._379px.jpg.jpg

The key is to "WASH YOUR HANDS"

Take care,
Mike

Great chart!

felix_the_cat December 31st, 2012 06:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lakers Fan (Post 1460007)
I have been to bathrooms at the United Nations and have viewed people not washing their hands .


I'm not sure where you're going with this. Are you saying it's OK not to wash your hands????????

felix_the_cat December 31st, 2012 06:49 PM

Long Term Care Facilities are the hardest place. I worked in 3 different ones doing the accounting and every time there was an outbreak they would try so hard to contain it. However we would always lose some patients/clients. And Dave, you're right - it's because of their weakened immune systems. Here LTCF are mandated to report outbreaks.

But I do agree, cruise ships do get the brunt of the publicity. I think that is mostly caused by disgruntled passengers who are ticked at being quaranted and losing some of their vacation.

rollerdonna December 31st, 2012 07:12 PM

I don't know why "norovirus" gets so much publicity when attached to cruise ships...it is much more prevalent in hospitals, care facilities, schools, and even the general population. I work in a school and more things go around there than you would believe!

I don't worry while on a cruise - cruise staff are vigilant about cleaning and anti-bacterial gel before entering eating areas. As long as YOU are vigilant about hygeine and hand washing, you shouldn't have a problem.

donna

taoist January 1st, 2013 06:01 AM

As rollerdonna says, being vigilant for your own benefit is the best way. The cruiselines and crew take cleaning very seriously, unlike some of the guests.

One thing that is worthwhile is to carry a small bottle of your own hand sanitiser for personal use. Use one that is primarily alcohol based, as this has been shown to be one of the most effective in studies.

Lakers Fan January 1st, 2013 02:54 PM

Hmmm
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by felix_the_cat (Post 1460030)
I'm not sure where you're going with this. Are you saying it's OK not to wash your hands????????

I was stating that I have personally observed a lot of people not washing their hands . One gentleman from Poland said that he believed that washing hands was good but drying them with hand towels was not good .

cruzzz1000 January 26th, 2013 11:24 PM

The CDC reported a strain of NV that originated in Australia recently.
We were on a cruise around New Zealand, out of Sydney, when our Captain reported the news.

We could not touch the plates, utensils nor serve our own food for the first week. Everything was done for you. Food in the Buffet was very slow but still much better than getting sick.

We washed our hands vigorously and often and did not touch our hands to our face. We did not trust the Purell going into dinner so we washed prior to entering, then used the purell (for appearances) and we carried our own purell with us and used it after we handled the menus.

We never got sick but the Medic was swamped with GI illnesses. You can still enjoy your vacation if you are extremely careful. You also do not know who is sick, and who has just touched the menu, the railings, the bar, etc.

So wash wash wash.

storybookcruises.com January 27th, 2013 01:47 AM

There was a story on the news a few weeks ago and they did a study to see where people going to a restaurant would pick up the most germs. They checked the tables, chairs, toilets, door handles, etc. What was interesting is where they found the most germs and it was where most people would not think about. The menus!

Everywhere else is usually wiped down, but no one thinks to wipe down the menus or thinks much about handling them.

So the moral of the story was that after sitting down and ordering your meal, you should wash your hands or use a hand sanitizer before picking up that piece of bread.

Another thing that was interesting is that they said it takes approximately 1800 germs to get the flu but only takes 18 germs to get the norovirus. (I could be off slightly on those numbers, but I think that's pretty close.) They also said a flu germ only lasts on the surface for a couple of hours, but a norovirus germ can last a couple of weeks. Nasty stuff this norovirus.

But as was pointed out, it's the second most common bug that we get, next to the common cold. Alot of people are scared to go on a cruise because that's the only place where it's required to be reported to the CDC. Yet it's more common on airplanes, malls, hospitals, schools, etc. and they're not required to report it. When was the last time you saw someone disinfecting the handrail on the escalator at your local mall? Yet you always see them wiping down handrails on a ship.

Bottom line is, as was already stated several times, wash your hands constantly. It's really is the best and easiest prevention.

Pete

Ron January 29th, 2013 11:31 PM

Cruise Planner, you have made a point that I have preached on for years, not only about ships but any restaurant, etc ashore--they never clean the menus and the salt / pepper shakers--people come in with clean hands, pick up a menu, usually flip through it several times and order, then pass the salt / pepper around and then grab the bread and butter--I always clean my hands after ordering and handling the salt / pepper shakers --then start to eat.
Not saying people shouldn't wash prior to coming to the table-- they should for sure--it's just that people cough, blow their nose, etc and then handle a menu, and that doesn't count how many times the server has handled it prior to giving it to you, which by the time you get it, it could be covered in who knows what.
Re / Noro on ships, last week here in my state a county canceled school because of something like the Noro but it only made the local news--had it been a ship, it would have been top billing on every news channel.
Take a few seconds to cleanse your hands really well with Purell after handling the menus, salt / pepper, etc--it couldn't hurt.


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