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Recent Norovirus and Flu Outbreaks Place Maine Nursing Home Residents at Risk

183130_dispenser sxchu username brokenarts.jpgThe Maine Center for Disease Control recently issued a norovirus outbreak warning that may affect nursing home residents throughout the state. According to State Epidemiologist Dr. Stephen Sears, the norovirus began being diagnosed in Maine in November. Although those who contracted the gastric disease were initially located primarily in York County, the virus has reportedly spread to other areas of Maine since that time. Dr. Sears stated the virus spreads extremely quickly and symptoms, which normally last several days, are often severe. The norovirus is purportedly spread by ingesting contaminated food or liquids, or through certain contact with someone who has contracted the disease.

Dr. Sears warned that many patients who are infected with norovirus may experience severe dehydration. Unlike other viruses such as influenza, there is currently no vaccine for norovirus. In addition, those afflicted may become ill more than once as a result of contracting different strains of the virus. Dr. Sears said the illness is highly contagious and the risk of outbreak is especially high in nursing homes and other facilities where residents normally live in close proximity to one another. Anyone who has underlying health conditions is advised to contact a physician if they contract the virus.

Communicable diseases such as norovirus and influenza can spread easily in nursing homes. In order to protect Maine seniors who reside in long-term care facilities, direct care workers must take precautionary measures designed to control the spread of disease. For example, sanitation is vital to the health of skilled nursing facility patients in our state and throughout the nation. Too often, nursing home caregivers who are pressed for time choose to cut corners. Many reportedly fail to use simple sanitation techniques such as washing their hands between residents. This small omission constitutes negligence on the part of direct care workers. If your elderly or disabled loved one died from a preventable disease that he or she contracted due to nursing home worker negligence, you should contact an experienced nursing home neglect lawyer to discuss your case.

If you lost a relative as a result of nursing home neglect or abuse, please call Briggs & Wholey, LLC toll free at (888) 596-1099. The committed Maine nursing home negligence attorneys at Briggs & Wholey have more than 50 years of combined experience representing the families of those who were mistreated, neglected, or tragically killed by someone who was tasked with providing their care. At Briggs & Wholey, our knowledgeable lawyers are available to answer any questions you may have and help you file your nursing home neglect case. Our hardworking attorneys help senior clients and their loved ones receive the compensation they deserve throughout the State of Maine. To schedule a free consultation with a capable lawyer, do not hesitate to contact Briggs & Wholey, LLC through our website.

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Additional Resources:

Norovirus outbreaks spreading throughout Maine, by Timm Goff, wcsh6.com

Photo credit: brokenarts, Stock.xchng