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Highlights

January 23, 2018

  • Environmental Health investigators revisited the restaurant on January 19 to ensure that proper cleaning and sanitizing of the restaurant was completed and to ensure employees are maintaining a high level of hand hygiene. The restaurant was allowed to re-open on January 19.

  • Public Health has learned of an additional 6 persons from 3 separate meal parties who became ill with symptoms consistent with norovirus after consuming food and beverage at Pho Aroma, from January 13-16. No new illnesses have been identified among restaurant employees.

  • There is no evidence of ongoing spread of illness related to this restaurant.

January 18, 2018

  • Public Health is investigating an outbreak of gastroenteritis with nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea associated with Pho Aroma in Seattle.

  • On January 16, 2018, Public Health learned of 3 ill persons from one meal party that became ill after consuming food and beverage from the restaurant on January 13.

  • As part of the Public Health investigation, Environmental Health investigators visited and closed the restaurant on January 17. During the field inspection, investigators identified 2 employees who experienced similar symptoms after the ill customers' meal date of January 13.

  • We do not have laboratory confirmation of the pathogen responsible for the illness, but symptoms are suggestive of norovirus. Often in norovirus outbreaks, no laboratory testing is done. The exact food or drink item that caused the illness has not been identified, though this is not uncommon for norovirus outbreaks where multiple food items may be contaminated.

About norovirus

  • Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that frequently spreads person-to-person and is often associated with food. Norovirus illness often has a sudden onset of nausea and vomiting and/or watery diarrhea with cramps. A low-grade fever, chills, and body aches sometimes occur.

  • Norovirus rarely causes severe complications. Dehydration is the most common complication, particularly among young children and the elderly. No vaccine is available for norovirus.

Prevention

General advice for reducing risk of contracting norovirus:

  1. Wash hands, cutting boards, and counters used for food preparation immediately after use to avoid cross contaminating other foods.
  2. Wash hands thoroughly with soap after using the bathroom or changing diapers, and before preparing any food or eating.
  3. Wait at least 48 hours after the last episode of vomiting and/or diarrhea before preparing any food for others.

More information about norovirus

  1. Norovirus facts, Public Health — Seattle & King County
  2. Norovirus facts, Foodsafety.gov
AT-A-GLANCE

Cases: 10
Hospitalizations: 0
Deaths: 0
Status: Investigation is ongoing

PUBLIC HEALTH ACTIONS

January 23, 2018

  • Environmental Health investigators revisited the restaurant on January 19 to ensure that proper cleaning and sanitizing of the restaurant was completed and to ensure employees are maintaining a high level of hand hygiene. The restaurant was allowed to re-open on January 19.

January 18, 2018

  • Environmental Health investigators visited the restaurant on January 17. During the field visit, investigators identified at least two employees that had been ill after the ill customers' meal date of January 13.

  • Ill staff will be required to remain out until they are symptom-free for at least 48 hours.

  • The restaurant is working cooperatively with Public Health; they closed on January 17 to allow time to complete a thorough cleaning and sanitizing of the restaurant.

  • Environmental Health investigators plan to revisit the restaurant before re-opening to ensure employees are maintaining a high level of hand hygiene and that proper cleaning and sanitizing of the restaurant was completed.
LOCATION

Pho Aroma
5605 Delridge Way SW
Seattle, WA 98106