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Update on investigations into suspected food poisoning outbreak in disabled home in Kwai Chung
     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health today (July 8) reported an update on its investigations into a suspected food poisoning outbreak in a residential care home for the disabled in Kwai Chung announced last night (July 7).

     Upon further investigations, the CHP has reached the remaining staff members who reported symptoms of acute gastroenteritis and identified 25 additional affected persons who developed diarrhoea and abdominal pain about five to 19 hours after consuming lunch in the staff canteen in the institution on July 6. Among them, eight sought medical attention and required no hospitalisation. All affected persons identified have been in stable condition.

     This brings the cumulative total of affected persons to 41, including eleven men and 30 women aged from 23 to 62. No residents were reported to have gastroenteritis symptoms at this stage.

     "Our officers have conducted site visit and reminded the management to adopt appropriate infection control measures. Medical surveillance of the institution is continuing. We again reminded management of institutions to maintain food and environmental hygiene to prevent food-borne diseases," a spokesman for the CHP said.

     To prevent food-borne diseases, institutions are advised to:
  • Choose and monitor food suppliers carefully; and
  • Hot foods should be kept at above 60 degrees Celsius while cold foods should be kept at four degrees Celsius or below.

     In general, members of the public are reminded to maintain personal, food and environmental hygiene at all times. When dining out:
  • Avoid eating raw seafood;
  • Be a discerning consumer in choosing cold dishes, including sashimi, sushi and raw oysters, at a buffet;
  • Ensure food is thoroughly cooked before eating during a hot pot or barbecue meal;
  • Handle raw and cooked foods carefully and separate them completely during the cooking process;
  • Use two sets of chopsticks and eating utensils to handle raw and cooked food;
  • Patronise only reliable and licensed restaurants;
  • Do not patronise illegal food hawkers;
  • Drink boiled water;
  • Do not try to use salt, vinegar, wine and wasabi to kill bacteria as they are not effective; and
  • Always wash hands before eating and after going to the toilet.
Ends/Saturday, July 8, 2017
Issued at HKT 15:52
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