(Reno, NV) — Washoe County health officials say they’ve identified an illness that’s sickened hundreds of elementary schoolers and sent eleven children to emergency rooms in a single day.

Health officials had speculated that norovirus was the cause of the gastrointestinal illness, but said Friday that sapovirus is also to blame. Officials say it’s the first time an outbreak in Washoe County has been traced to sapovirus.

Dr. Joseph Iser of the health district says he’s now calling for all students and staff to stay home from school for 24 hours if they have a stomach ache. He says they should stay home for three days after their final symptoms if they have vomiting, diarrhea or fever.

School officials contacted parents district-wide when three elementary schools were seeing infection rates of 20 percent.


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