SINGAPORE: The number of people affected by a suspected gastroenteritis outbreak at several PCF Sparkletots preschool centres has increased to 184, from 109 previously.
In an update on Thursday (Mar 28), the Ministry of Health (MOH) said that as of 4pm on Wednesday, 18 of those affected had been hospitalised.
Nine have since been discharged while the rest are in stable condition, MOH said.
A PCF Sparkletots preschool spokesperson on Thursday said that children from seven of its preschools have displayed symptoms of food poisoning.
Six of the affected preschools are located at Block 210, Block 270, Block 290A, Block 298B, Block 262A and Block 208 at Sengkang Central. The PCF Sparkletots preschool at Punggol North was also affected.
“We are in close contact with affected parents and monitoring their children’s condition. PCF Sparkletots will continue to provide the relevant support for all affected parties,” the spokesperson added.
In an earlier joint statement with the National Environment Agency and the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority on Tuesday, MOH had said that 109 cases of gastroenteritis were reported at four PCF Sparkletots preschool centres.
The outbreak of gastroenteritis was traced to the consumption of food prepared by Kate’s Catering.
While the cause of the children's illnesses has yet to be determined, the caterer's services have been suspended at all 11 centres "for an indefinite period of time", said PCF Sparkletots in an earlier statement, adding that it is assisting the authorities in their investigation.
"Temporary food arrangements have already been made to provide meals from an in-house cook with the requisite certification or from other NEA-certified food caterers," it said.