Contagious stomach bug sickens dozens at Lafayette College

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Contagious stomach bug sickens dozens at Lafayette College. Walter Perez reports during Action News at 4:30pm on February 6, 2019.

A highly contagious stomach bug is spreading at Lafayette College.

"So yesterday I had about five episodes of vomiting," said Michael Burke, a sophomore at the college.

Burke is one of approximately 30 students diagnosed on campus with a very contagious, very unpleasant stomach bug this week.

"Abdominal pain, just feeling like really bad and it was not great and a good night's sleep. Now I feel a lot better, getting more fluids in me so yeah, I'm feeling a lot better," Burke added.

Conner Thatcher was also infected. He says this bug moves quickly, but violently.

"Yea, definitely not pleasant. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy," said Thatcher.

Lafayette students just returned last week to begin the spring semester when suddenly, this past Monday, the bug surfaced in a few students, and rapidly began to spread.

"We asked students who feel ill to not go to class, not go to social events. If you are a student-athlete don't go to practice. We've arranged a 'flu buddy' system so that if you're feeling sick, don't even go to the dining halls. We will bring your meals to you," said Mark Eyerly, the vice president of communications at Lafayette College.

As of Wednesday night, it seems to have worked.

The number of new cases dropped dramatically from Tuesday and officials from the campus health center are optimistic that the worst is over.

Burke says some of the credit goes to the resident advisers on campus who really went the extra mile.

"House managers, they dressed up in Ghostbusters suits, bleached the bathrooms, and everything. They are the real troopers out there," said Burke.

In Bethlehem, approximately a dozen students were diagnosed with a similar bug at Moravian College. Beyond that, no further outbreaks have been reported at other colleges and universities in the Lehigh Valley.
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