Health officials in Edmonton said Friday there is an outbreak of norovirus in city nursing homes, seniors' residences and daycares.

Fourteen outbreaks have been reported in the past two weeks, according to Dr. James Talbot, associate medical officer of health for Alberta Health Services — Capital Health.

"In the last two weeks, we've worked with institutions on 14 separate outbreaks. The same time period last year, we had worked on three," he said, adding health officials have noticed a pattern where a larger number of outbreaks occur every second year.

A news release Friday morning had previously indicated there were 12 outbreaks in the city.

Talbot said health officials are primarily concerned about people in continuing care facilities who are older or have serious medical conditions.

"For the average person, norovirus is a pretty unpleasant 24 hours of nausea and vomiting and diarrhea. But for people who are more at risk, more serious consequences can happen," he said.

Health officials said people can best stop the spread of norovius by washing their hands frequently and staying home if they are sick.

Norovirus is a highly contagious viral infection that usually lasts 24 to 48 hours with symptoms that include vomiting and diarrhea.

Capital Health advises people who think they have norovirus to stay home, drink plenty of fluids, stay away from schools and daycares and not visit anyone in a nursing home, seniors' residence or hospital.