The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has voiced its concerns at the high levels of E-coli infection in Ireland, with provisional figures of 285 cases of human infection recorded in 2011 by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre.
Most E-coli bacteria are harmless, but some types are extremely harmful and can cause severe stomach pains and bloody diarrhoea and can also progress to cause kidney failure and death in some cases. Young children and infants are particularly at risk from E-coli infection and special attention must be paid to protect their health.
Children and childcare workers in childcare settings are unwittingly spreading E-coli infection and the FSAI is urging childcare workers and crèche owners to ensure that they have robust hygiene practices in place to reduce the incidents of this potential life threatening bug.
There were 9 outbreaks of E-coli infection in children attending crèches. E-coli has been associated with private water supplies and certain types of food. In its mildest form the symptoms often clear up within approximately 8 days but children may continue to shed the bacteria for much longer. Babies and young children are most susceptible to kidney failure.
The FSA’s top tips for preventing the spread of E-coli infection are:
• Wash hands properly and often.
• Use a safe water supply.
• Prepare food hygienically and store it properly.
• Wash hands after contact with animals.
• Stay away from the childcare facility for 48hours if you have diarrhoea or vomiting.
If you or your child has contracted E-coli from attending a crèche you may be entitled to obtain compensation. Liam Moloney, Solicitor specialises in the area of Health Care Law and can be contacted today for a free consultation at 045-898000 or simply log onto our website www.moloneysolicitors.ie for further information.