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Officials refute rumors on death of a child due to food poisoning

Only seven out of 40 victims still in hospital

KUWAIT CITY, July 9: Despite the large number of people who suffered from food poisoning after eating meals prepared by a ‘felafel’ restaurant last Friday, a security source revealed that Nughrah Police Station received only one complaint in this regard, reports Al-Anba daily.

The source told the daily that the concerned authorities have yet to summon the restaurant’s owner and workers for questioning. He affirmed all those who suffered from food poisoning due to food served by the restaurant have the right to file a complaint and they should attach a medical report to the complaint for the Interior Ministry to take legal action.

Meanwhile, officials from the Ministry of Health has refuted rumors on the death of a child due to the incident; affirming most of the victims got treatment within three hours and others have been discharged from the hospital.

Amiri Hospital Director Dr Ali Al-Alnada disclosed only six or seven out of more than 40 victims are still confined in the hospital, adding that they will be discharged within the next few hours. Al-Alnada also denied rumors spread on social networking websites that a Syrian family who came to the country on visit visa and were among the food poisoning victims paid for the treatment fees.

He said some members of the family are still undergoing treatment at the pediatric ward and they have not been asked to pay any fees, asserting the hospital handles all emergency cases regardless of the nationality and residency type of the patient. He reiterated the family will not be required to pay for any health services upon completion of the treatment.

Speaking to daily, Board chairperson of the Public Authority for Food and Nutritions Esaa Al-Kandari revealed the samples were submitted to the Health Ministry’s laboratories for testing. He stressed the authority applies zero tolerance policy in dealing with such cases, pointing out that closing the restaurant immediately after the incident was just a precautionary measure. He asserted the authority registered violations committed by the restaurant’s owner who was referred to the Public Prosecution. Meanwhile, Deputy of Director General for Inspection and Monitoring Affairs in the authority Amal Al-Rashdan disclosed the committee held an urgent meeting to discuss the incident. He added the authority will continue taking the necessary procedures upon receiving results from the laboratories and medical checkup of the restaurant’s workers from the Ministry of Health. In addition, Director of Health Development Department Dr Abeer Al-Bahawa has warned about the rising number of food poisoning cases during summer, indicating the most common cause is rotten food. She advised the public to avoid sneezing and coughing in front of food, to always cover food, and keep insecticides away from food items.

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