CHINA> Regional
Cholera outbreak in Hainan 'under control'
By Huang Yiming and Li Aoxue (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-11-05 07:32

Twenty-nine of the 51 people treated for cholera in Hainan were discharged from hospital on Monday, and the situation is now under control, the provincial health department said on Tuesday.

No new cases have been reported since Sunday, spokeswoman Wu Guizhu told China Daily. "Our investigations traced the outbreak of the acute intestinal illness to a dinner party held in the village of Huangyu in Danzhou on Oct 20," she said.

In an interview with the Xinhua News Agency on Tuesday, Bai Zhiqin, director of the health department, said the disease was probably partly triggered by the recent humid weather that followed heavy rain in the province.

However, all of the reported cases were "sporadic" and neither locals nor visitors to the island need have any concerns about their safety, he said.

Nonetheless, all food and catering businesses in the province will be inspected, as will all restaurants in areas where infections were reported, he said.

Wu said that experts from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention are now in Hainan to help monitor the situation.

The eight Hainan University students who were diagnosed with cholera on Friday are now in a stable condition, but will remain in quarantine until they recover completely, she said.

"We have to make sure they are back to full health to ensure no other people become infected," she said.

On Monday, all three of its main buildings were disinfected, and all students have been given medicine to protect them against the disease, Wu said.