Oamaru retirement village in lockdown

An unknown bug sweeping through an Oamaru retirement village has forced the facility into lockdown.

Observatory Village Lifecare, in Stoke St, was quarantined on Wednesday after the first cases of the yet-to-be-determined virus were reported the previous day.

General manager Rosie Dwyer said symptoms included vomiting and diarrhoea, but she was unable to confirm how many residents or staff and been struck down.

She said bugs such as the one that had hit the village were "not uncommon in aged care facilities".

Staff were working within Southern District Health Board and Ministry of Health guidelines to determine the nature of the bug and prevent it from spreading.

"We have sent some specimens away to be tested, but we always err on the side of caution. We treat anything as if it's highly infectious because ... we want to minimise the risk of it spreading."

Mrs Dwyer advised people not to visit friends or family members, including those in apartments and villas, until the lockdown had been lifted.

That would not be until at least 48 hours after the last person displayed symptoms.

Public Health South was being updated daily.

No new cases were reported yesterday.

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