Probe after 14 pre-school kids fall ill after eating lunch, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

Probe after 14 pre-school kids fall ill after eating lunch

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AVA, MOH investigating gastroenteritis outbreak at school

An investigation has been launched after 14 children at a pre-school vomited and had diarrhoea after having their lunch there last Friday).

The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) and the Ministry of Health (MOH) are investigating an outbreak of gastroenteritis at PCF Sparkletots @ Toa Payoh West-Balestier Block 45, said an AVA spokesman yesterday.

As of Saturday, 14 of the cases were reported to have developed symptoms of gastroenteritis, the spokesman added.

A spokesman for the PAP Community Foundation, which manages the pre-school in question, said about 40 children ate the same lunch, which was served at around 11.15am.

The affected children, aged between three and six, started vomiting from about 3.30pm on Friday. None have been hospitalised.

PCF corporate affairs manager Samuel Ng told The Straits Times that parents of the children who became unwell were informed as soon as possible.

"We remain in close contact with the affected children's parents and will monitor the situation," he said.

Speaking to Chinese-language daily Lianhe Wanbao, a parent who did not wish to be named said he was informed of the incident at about 5pm last Friday. His daughter had vomited three times by then.

"My daughter vomited five more times at the clinic and when she returned home. The school should have contacted us immediately and not waited for two hours," he said.

Mr Ng explained that Toa Payoh West Sparkletots had engaged a caterer since Nov 15 last year, after the in-house cook resigned. PCF did not disclose the name of the caterer.

Mr Ng said the matter has been reported to the Early Childhood Development Agency and MOH.