12/10/2012 06:48 EST | Updated 02/09/2013 05:12 EST

Norwalk-type virus sickens 23 patients, 5 staff at hospital in Saskatoon

SASKATOON - The Saskatoon Health Region says 23 patients and five staff have now fallen ill to a Norwalk-like virus at St. Paul's Hospital.

On Friday, the region closed Surgery 5-B and fifth floor medicine to try to contain the outbreak.

Donna Wiens, director of infection prevention and control, says the virus causes vomiting and diarrhea for 24 to 48 hours, but some have it longer.

The last person to get it was reported on Saturday and they have to wait for four days without a case to reopen the two floors to normal operations.

The region hinted the virus is likely Norwalk, but it is still unconfirmed.

Though often associated with food preparation, the region says viruses like Norwalk, which are not airborne, still often spread in hospitals because of close-quarters and shared washrooms.