The Mecklenburg County Health Department released numbers Friday showing how rapidly the norovirus is spreading through nursing homes.
So far this year, between 150 and 200 cases have been reported. About 30 of those are staff members at nursing homes.
"This virus spreads pretty quickly from person to person," said Dr. Lenonard Williams, who studies the virus at the North Carolina Research Campus. He said he hasn't seen it spread like this in Mecklenburg County in a long time.
Earlier in the week, Eyewitness News reported 135 customers at a Harbor Inn Seafood in Conover had been infected with the virus, which causes severe nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
Health officials have confirmed cases in eight North Carolina counties.
Dr. Williams recommended washing hands thoroughly to prevent spreading the virus and said patients who contract it should stay away from others for at least a week.