NICHINAN, Japan, Dec. 23 (UPI) -- A norovirus outbreak at a hospital in southwestern Japan has killed six patients, hospital officials said Sunday.
The victims, all males in their 70s and 80s, all died after showing signs of virus-caused gastroenteritis symptoms, including vomiting and diarrhea, vomiting and diarrhea, Kyodo reported.
About 44 patients and doctors at Shunkokaihigashi hospital in Nichinan, Miyazaki prefecture, have shown symptoms of gastroenteritis caused by the norovirus, officials said.
Health ministry officials have advised local governments to pay attention to the norovirus epidemic. Norovirus can be passed through person-to-person contact, eating contaminated food or inhaling particles in the air.