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Microbial contamination poisons over 200 students

Update: February, 21/2017 - 16:45
Primary students are treated at the Vĩnh Long General Hospital. — Photo
Viet Nam News

VĨNH LONG  Microbial contamination was responsible for the mass food poisoning of over 200 students 10 days ago in the southern province’s capital city of Vĩnh Long, the provincial department of food safety announced Monday.

According to test results of collected samples by the Institute of HCM City Hygiene and Public Health, fried rice and minced meat soup that the victims consumed contain an inordinate amount of E-coli, coliforms and staphylococcus aureus.

Some 210 students and three teachers from three primary schools in the province were affected by the contamination, showing typical signs of food poisoning after consuming the dishes, such as stomachache, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Fortunately, thanks to early hospitalisation, most of the the victims recovered well and were discharged the day after, while a handful of more serious cases must remain at the hospitals for a few days but "nothing too dangerous," according to doctors at the Vĩnh Long General Hospital.

The dishes were prepared by local food caterer named Vĩnh Xương, owned by Đinh Thuỵ Lan Phương, based in Vĩnh Long City.

Relevant agencies found that the caterer had not been granted a food hygiene licence. It was also found to be guilty of a number of food safety violations, such as improper storage of food samples and other regulations on kitchen design and functions. The caterer’s operation was thus suspended.

The local authorities said, based on these findings, the students’ hospital fees and the sample testing fees would be paid by the caterer, in addition to a fine of VNĐ22-28 million (US$964 - 1,226) according to Decree No.178/2013 issued by the government on administrative sanctions for food safety violations. — VNS

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