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Infectious Disease, Food Poisoning Reports on Rise in September

Infectious diseases and food poisoning topped the reports of public health emergencies in China last month, according to the Ministry of Health.

Local reporting network received 264 reports of public health incidents with 11,109 cases and 53 deaths in September.

The number of incidents rose by 32 percent year-on-year and the cases rose by 30.9 percent, said the ministry in a report.

Infectious diseases accounted for 59 percent of the incidents and food poisoning accounted for 31 percent.

Encephalitis B, bacterial diarrhea, epidemic parotitis were the main reported infectious diseases and food poisoning were mostly caused by bacteria and other microbes.

Forty-five percent of the food poisoning incidents occurred in schools and 16 percent at homes, according to the ministry.

The latest in a string of food poisoning incidents in schools sickened at least 237 students and teachers from the school attached to Zhongshan University in the southern city of Guangzhou.

The Ministry of Education has ordered local education departments to inspect sanitary conditions regularly and invest in refurnishing school facilities to ensure the cleanliness of food and drinking water.

(Xinhua News Agency October 16, 2006)

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