Prevent Norovirus Outbreaks

Professional Audit and Advisory Services

Medical Audits have been providing Norovirus Outbreak prevention and Infection Prevention audit and consultancy services for many years.

Our team of experienced clinical and quality assurance staff have decades of experience in Healthcare which they are happy to share with you.

We can come on site, assess your risks for outbreak and advise on a strategy to reduce risks

Norovirus – What is Norovirus and why Is it so Infectious?

Norovirus (also known as NLV, SRSV, “Winter Vomiting Disease or winter vomiting bug) is the most common cause of viral gastroenteritis (diarrhoea and vomiting) in Ireland, UK and indeed worldwide.

It is the gastrointestinal equivalent of the common cold. In any year 1% - 5% of the population can expect to be affected by this virus – up to 5,000 people per week in Ireland alone.

Norovirus and hospitals

Hospitals are particularly effected during outbreaks.

Patients enter via Accident and Emergency departments, mix in overcrowded areas and are then admitted to different wards leading to hospital wide outbreaks.

Some out breaks have been traced back to visitors and staff.

Norovirus and Schools and Colleges

Norovirus can spread through schools and colleges infecting staff and students alike.

Classroom and campus wide outbreaks of Norovirus are not uncommon.

Immunity to Norovirus

Immunity to Norovirus is short lived- often only 2-3 months.

For this reason, people can become infected on numerous occasions during a single year.

Prevent Outbreaks and reduce spread of infection

The virus spreads on the hands of individuals who touch contaminated surfaces and then ingest ‘eat’ the virus by putting their fingers and hands up to their mouth and face.

Unfortunately it is not always possible to prevent outbreaks due to norovirus, simple interventions can minimise its effects.

Rapid recognition of an outbreak is essential to any further management and control. Surveillance of sudden onset diarrhoea and vomiting in patients can be problematic due to the effects of post-operative anaesthetic and medications.

Early actions such as environmental cleaning, frequent thorough handwashing, cohorting of ill patients and exclusion of ill staff are effective ways of restricting the extent of outbreaks.

Infection prevention consultancy and advice

We specialise in providing unbiased, professional and expert auditing and consultancy services including :-

  • Infection control compliance auditing and consultancy
  • Expert Infection prevention advice and consultancy
  • Healthcare cleaning standards
  • Compliance monitoring consultancy and advice
  • Infection prevention and control standards
  • Specialist Infection Prevention advice and consultancy
  • CQC compliance
  • HIQA and JCI compliance
  • Professional assessment of cleaning standards
  • Professional report preparation

Our independent audits can be used to complement your internal audits and inspections and provide unbiased, in-depth reporting on all aspects of facilities cleanliness and compliance with best practice healthcare standards.

"I found the audit and consultancy services provided by Medical Audits excellent and the auditor was a joy to deal with.

I will be booking the Medical Audits service to return to do a re-audit with us once we have implemented our recommended action plan.

I will be definitely recommending the service to colleagues."

Mairead Walsh
Merlin Park Residential Care Services

Preparation of Local Norovirus Outbreak Policies

We can review your current Standard operating procedures or prepare SOPs from scratch.

We will review best practice standards and develop leaflets and information you can distribute to patients, families, students and teachers alike.

We can provide staff training on cleaning practices and provide advice on how to prevent further outbreaks.

Norovirus does not distinguish between schools, colleges, universities and healthcare institutions.

If there are people – then Norovirus can and will spread.

Designing local Audit and Quality Assurance Programmes

We work with education providers and healthcare providers alike to assist them in identifying areas for improvement and causes of deficiencies.

We can come on site and work with you to develop your own local auditing schedules and auditing tools and teach you how to evidence compliance with healthcare cleaning contracts and National cleaning standards.

Norovirus UK Consultancy