OVER 60 pupils, school staff and parents have been affected by a suspected outbreak of norovirus at a Montgomeryshire school.

Public Health Wales and Powys County Council are working together to investigate a number of cases of diarrhoea and vomiting linked to Ysgol Penygloddfa, in Newtown.

At least 60 people are known to have become unwell at the school and on a residential school trip.

Investigations are ongoing into both the source and the cause of the illness, but norovirus is suspected to be the most likely cause.

The school voluntarily closed as a precautionary measure on Friday, September 15 and has since reopened following a ‘deep clean’.

Dr Christopher Johnson, Consultant in Communicable Disease Control for Public Health Wales, said: “We are aware that at least 60 pupils and staff at the school are affected.

“We are continuing to monitor the local area for further cases developing in the local community. Powys environmental health officers are continuing to investigate the incident.

“Anyone who has been ill should not return to work or school for 48 hours after their last symptoms to prevent spreading infection to others.

“We would remind anyone who is unwell at any time with diarrhoea or vomiting that they should seek advice from their GP or NHS Direct Wales if they are concerned about their symptoms.

“It is also important to avoid spreading infection to other people at home, and people who are unwell should wash their hands thoroughly with soap and warm water after using the toilet and before preparing food, and should not share towels with other people.”

For more on the norovirus, visit: www.wales.nhs.uk/sitesplus/888/page/ 43919