There are confirmed cases of norovirus at Cal Poly, according to a PolyAlert Emergency Notification sent out at 7:42 p.m. on Thursday.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, norovirus is a contagious virus that causes inflammation in your stomach and intestines which can lead to stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting. It can be transmitted via personal contact, consuming contaminated food or water or by touching contaminated surfaces.
This follows a campus-wide announcement from Student Affairs earlier that day that more than a dozen Cal Poly students had reported that they have experienced vomiting and diarrhea — symptoms of norovirus.
However, several students reported to Mustang News that they felt these symptoms after eating at Curbside Grill on campus and went to Sierra Vista Medical Center last night for treatment. Materials engineering sophomore Carolina Cleland said she and three of her friends ate at the food truck Tuesday and felt sick the next day.
“We only like falafels, gyros and chicken shawarma and they use the same sauce on all three of them,” Cleland said. “We all ate different things there so we think it’s the sauce that they put on everything. One of my friends said that it smelled weird even though I didn’t notice anything.”
Mechanical engineering sophomore Kalina Burns also ate at Curbside Grill and said she started feeling sick at 2 p.m. on Wednesday.
“I started to get sick and threw up from like 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. and then went to the hospital around 10:30 p.m. We were all there until about 3 a.m.,” Burns said.
Burns told Mustang News there were several patients besides her friends at Sierra Vista who stated they also ate at Curbside Grill.
Doctors at Sierra Vista prescribed mechanical engineering sophomore Maddie McCool anti-nausea medication to help keep liquids down, as she was severely dehydrated. As of Thursday, McCool stated she feels better.
“It’s only been 24 hours and I feel mostly better,” McCool said.
To avoid contracting an illness, health officials advise thoroughly washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after using the restroom or before eating, preparing or handling food.
Anyone experiencing vomiting and diarrhea is advised to stay home, rest and stay hydrated while avoiding caffeine and alcohol. Health officials also said not to use antibiotics unless advised by a physician, as they may not help treat the illness and could make symptoms worse.
If you are experiencing abdominal pains, see blood in your stool or are continuously vomiting, seek medical care.
Questions about the illness can be directed to the Cal Poly Health Center at (805) 756-1211.