01/25/2013 05:59 EST | Updated 03/27/2013 05:12 EDT

Visitor restrictions imposed at Cape Breton continuing care facility

GLACE BAY, N.S. - Cape Breton District Health Authority has imposed strict visitor restrictions at a continuing care facility after an outbreak of a gastrointestinal illness.

The health authority says no visitors — including immediate family and next of kin — will be allowed to visit Taigh Na Mara in Glace Bay until further notice.

Nineteen of the 34 residents of the facility's veterans' unit and 13 staff are sick with gastrointestinal symptoms, which can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and cramps.

All social gatherings for the residents have been cancelled.

Earlier this week, the authority imposed visitor restrictions at all of its nine facilities to limit the spread of flu and flu-like illness as well as gastrointestinal illness.