Hong Kong health authorities are investigating an outbreak of acute gastroenteritis involving 24 staff members at a rehabilitation complex in Wong Chuk Hang.
The employees, aged between 29 and 64, are from Tung Wah Group of Hospitals Jockey Club Rehabilitation Complex on Welfare Road in the Southern district of Hong Kong Island.
The Centre for Health Protection said the sick workers had developed abdominal pain, fever and diarrhoea since Thursday.
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Eight of them went to private clinics, while one 34-year-old woman was hospitalised after seeking medical attention at the Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital in Chai Wan. All patients were in a stable condition as of Saturday afternoon.
Acute gastroenteritis is typically caused by norovirus or rotavirus infection. The viruses can be transmitted by the consumption of contaminated food or contact with the vomit of an infected person.
The centre said acute gastroenteritis outbreaks – which can be difficult to control – happen throughout the year, but are known to occur more frequently in winter months.
The Wong Chuk Hang office has been put under medical surveillance, and management was reminded to maintain hygiene, while a site visit from officers of the Centre of Health Protection found the office’s cleanliness to be satisfactory.
Health officials have also provided advice to office staff on disinfection, disposal of vomit and personal and environmental hygiene, according to a spokesman.
There were several cases of acute gastroenteritis between October and December last year, including when outbreaks at two separate kindergartens in Ma Wan and Sha Tin in November, which saw a total of at least 79 pupils infected.