Diarrhoea outbreak spreads across Phuket


PHUKET Governor Narong Woonciew issued a health alert today (June 8) that a diarrhoea outbreak has spread across the island with the suspected cause being contaminated drinking water and ice, TV Channel 7 said this evening.

Accompanied by Dr. Kusak Kukiatkul, the provincial public health doctor, and other officials Narong said Phuket has a history of being hit by diarrhoea outbreak with the start of the rainy season increasing the risk.

Diarrhoeal disease can be caused by either bacteria or virus, such as norovirus or rotavirus.

The outbreak first emerged towards the end of May at a school where around 50 to 60 students fell sick. However health inspectors did not find any contaminated food or water served at the canteen.

During June 6-8, 2023 around 50 to 60 people a day sought treatment for diarrhoea at the state hospitals and around 100 at private hospitals. The majority were given medicine and allowed to return home but around three to four patients were hospitalised each day.

Narong reassured that there is sufficient medicine and hospital beds for patients.

While this outbreak has spread across the island many were falling sick in Mueang, Kathu and Thalang districts. Both children and adults are getting infected in equal numbers.

Consumer protection teams have spread out to collect drinking water and ice samples from various plants and schools for the  Medical Sciences Centre to test.

Preventive methods include eating hot food, using serving spoons, avoiding ice and washing hands frequently.


Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew and senior officials issuing diarrhoea alert today, June 8, 2023. Photo: TV Channel 7

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TNR staff

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