55 children suffer food poisoning after meal in Saigon church

By Le Binh, Le Phuong   October 28, 2018 | 08:26 pm PT
55 children suffer food poisoning after meal in Saigon church
Students are treated at a hospital in HCMC after suffering from food poisoning on Sunday. Photo by VnExpress/Le Binh
Dozens of children aged seven to 12 had to be hospitalized with food poisoning Sunday after attending a church service in HCMC.

Preliminary investigation reveals that the kids had been served bread roll sandwich with chicken floss that morning at the Tan Thai Son Church in the suburban Tan Phu District to the west of the city.

Around 11 a.m. many of them started vomiting and had high fever, stomachache and diarrhea. The families immediately took them to a local hospital.

Soon dozens more started having similar symptoms.

As of Sunday night at least 55 children and two adults had been hospitalized with food poisoning.

Health officials inspected the sandwich retailer in Tan Phu and its chicken floss supplier in Cu Chi District, one hour away, on Monday morning and found several hygiene violations.

They are still testing food samples for further conclusions but suspected that the chicken floss had been infected with Staphylococcus, a bacteria genus known as a common cause of food poisoning.

Food poisoning breaks out frequently in Vietnam, mostly after meals at school and factory canteens.

In December last year 142 children at An Phu Primary School in HCMC’s District 2 were hospitalized and diagnosed with gastrointestinal infections after eating food served at the school.

The offenders in such cases are rarely taken to court.

Official data shows 1,300 people were affected in 53 cases of food poisoning in the first half of this year, 11 of them fatally.

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