By Dr. Deanna Lites

DETROIT (WWJ) – The flu virus is losing steam in metro Detroit, but another virus is on the rise.

The norovirus, a common stomach virus that’s very contagious, is circulating around local communities.

“Right now what we’re seeing is actually more of the vomiting, diarrhea-type reports from schools,” Washtenaw County Public Heath spokeswoman Susan Cerniglia told WWJ Health Reporter Dr. Deanna Lites.

The best way to prevent the spread of the virus is through frequent hand washing, and staying at home if you’re sick.

“If someone has been sick, cleaning those frequently touched surfaces with a bleach-based solution can help reduce the spread of illness,” Cerniglia said. “And don’t prepare food for at least three days after illness.”

Most people get better in one to three days, but norovirus can pose a serious health threat for young children and older adults.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says about 19 to 21 million people get sick from the norovirus each year — and it’s responsible for more than 600 deaths a year. Get more information HERE.

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