Diarrhoea and / or vomiting can occur due to a variety of causes, such as Clostridioides difficile, Norovirus, or food-borne infections, such as Salmonella, Campylobacter and Clostridium perfringens. In the hospital setting, Clostridioides difficile and Norovirus are the most common infectious cause of diarrhoea, however, it is important to bear in mind there are other infectious causes, as well as non-infectious causes. Therefore, at the onset of symptoms, it is important to carefully assess the patient and where an infectious cause is suspected, infection prevention and control precautions must be implemented at the earliest stage to reduce the risk of cross-infection to others.

Much of the detail in this policy relates to Norovirus (section1). For other types of gastroenteritis (including food borne infections) refer to the Quick Reference Guide for Common Gastrointestinal Infections in section 2 of this policy, and the Trust Major Outbreak Plan.

Where Clostridioides difficile is suspected / confirmed refer to the Trust policy for Clostridioides difficile.

This policy sets the Trust standards for infection prevention and control when caring for patients with suspected or confirmed infectious diarrhoea and / or vomiting (other than Clostridioides difficile).


Policy Details

Download: PDF version
Compiled by: Shila Patel, Nurse Consultant Infection Prevention and Control
Ratified by: Control of Infection Committee
Date Ratified: April 2023
Date Issued: May 2023
Review Date: April 2026
Target Audience: All clinical staff
Contact name: Shila Patel, Nurse Consultant Infection Prevention and Control


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