Fat Duck norovirus 'worst ever'

08 Dec 2011

The norovirus outbreak at Heston Blumenthal's award-winning Fat Duck restaurant in Bray two years ago was the biggest ever reported, a new study has found.

The report, which was published in an academic journal, said that the outbreak size and duration may have been increased because public health authorities were not informed immediately.

At least 240 people were infected with the vomiting bug when they ate at the Berkshire restaurant in the spring of 2009. The first cases were documented in January, but the Health Protection Agency and local authorities were only informed in late February, after a delay of around six weeks.

The report by several authors found that the delay "resulted in an ongoing risk of exposure to infection for diners".

It said: "The size and duration of this outbreak exceed any other commercial restaurant-associated norovirus outbreaks in the published literature."

A spokesman for the Fat Duck said the restaurant rejected the accusations.

Copyright Press Association 2011

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