Health officials are warning that Norovirus, the highly contagious disease that has hit some cruise ships, is sweeping Iowa. Doctor Lauren Herwaldt, an epidemiologist at University of Iowa Hospitals, is warning health care workers.

“The reason I’m so concerned is that because we’re seeing a lot of it in the community then people come into the hospital potentially with it and this is a very highly-contagious virus and it can be easily spread from person to person,” Herwaldt says.

“Obviously within a hospital we are concerned about that and we want to prevent that.” Dr. Herwaldt says the best protection against Norovirus is hand washing with soap and water, especially before preparing food and after restroom use. Norovirus causes nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fever.