The number of deaths in England
associated with gastrointestinal pathogens, norovirus
in particular, in persons >65 years was estimated for 2001–2006.
Regression analysis was used to model monthly counts of gastrointestinal
pathogens in fecal samples from infected patients against monthly counts of
deaths from infectious and noninfectious intestinal diseases. Data came from
the Office of National Statistics (death registrations from local registrars)
and from the Health Protection Agency (laboratory results). Model results
suggest that 20% (13.3%–26.8%) of deaths in persons >65 years of
age caused by infectious intestinal disease other than Clostridium difficile were associated with norovirus
infection in this period and that 13% (7.5%–18.5%) of deaths caused by
noninfectious intestinal disease were associated with norovirus.
An estimated 80 deaths each year in this age group may be associated with norovirus infection.