The Harvard Faculty Club closed last Tuesday due to several reports of possible norovirus infections from its patrons, despite earlier signs of possible norovirus contamination.
After the Club closed, the University and Cambridge Public Health Department took over investigations.
“If they knew that something was amiss as early as Saturday, why did they keep serving food? I think that’s the real issue,” wrote Phoebe Kosman, a publicist for Harvard University Press in an e-mail to The Crimson.
Crista Martin, Harvard University Dining Services director for marketing and communications, said that several guests first reported feeling ill on March 27, according to an article in The Boston Globe.
But these viral outbreaks were not limited to Harvard’s campus. Emerson College had reported 75 cases of similar symptoms up until last Thursday, a Globe article said.
Terry Stackhouse, a student at Emerson College, said in an e-mail to The Crimson that he felt sick when he was on live radio and had to leave his show to vomit during one of the breaks.
At the peak of the norovirus outbreak at Emerson late last month, about 10 to 13 students per day went to the medical center for symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, said Andrew Tiedemann, Emerson’s vice president for communications and marketing, in an interview with The Globe.
Norovirus infects the small intestines, causing stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Inspectors from the Boston Public Health Commission’s Infectious Disease Bureau recommended measures to contain the spread of the disease including urging students and faculty members to wash their hands and not share food utensils.