SAMBICA: Summer Camp and Retreat Center
Foodborne illness outbreak investigation
Updated August 17, 2017 at 3:00 pm
Public Health completed the investigation of the outbreak of gastroenteritis associated with Camp SAMBICA. Environmental Health inspectors returned to the camp on Saturday, August 12th and found that the camp had been appropriately cleaned and disinfected, and all violations had been corrected. Inspectors reminded camp management to exclude any ill staff from returning to work until they are symptom-free for at least 48 hours. With approval from Public Health, the camp was reopened on Sunday, August 13th for the next group of campers.
Posted August 11, 2017 at 4:57 pm
- Public Health is investigating an outbreak of gastroenteritis with nausea, vomiting and diarrhea associated with Camp SAMBICA in Bellevue.
- As many as twenty nine ill campers and staff have been reported with symptoms starting August 8th.
- We do not have laboratory confirmation of the etiology, but symptoms are suggestive of norovirus. Often in norovirus outbreaks no laboratory testing is done.
- Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that is frequently spread 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.
Public Health recommendations
- The camp is working cooperatively with Public Health and is cleaning and disinfecting the cabins and kitchen facilities.
- Ill staff will be required to remain out until they are symptom-free for at least 48 hours.
- A return visit will be conducted to ensure that the facility has been decontaminated and all violations have been corrected before the camp reopens.
General advice for reducing risk of contracting norovirus:
- Wash hands, cutting boards, and counters used for food preparation immediately after use to avoid cross contaminating other foods.
- Wash hands thoroughly with soap after using the bathroom or changing diapers, and before preparing any food or eating.
- Wait at least 48 hours after the last episode of vomiting and/or diarrhea before preparing any food for others.
More information about Norovirus
PUBLIC HEALTH ACTIONS
August 11, 2017
- Public Health's Environmental Health inspectors visited the camp on August 11th. During the field inspection, they identified violations related to improper handwashing facilities and sanitizing, which are both risk factors for spreading norovirus.
- We also identified one food worker that was working while ill in the days before the others developed symptoms
4114 W Lake Sammamish Pkwy SE
Bellevue, WA 98008