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7 More Cholera Cases Reported in S China

Seven more cholera cases were confirmed in China's southernmost Hainan Province on Sunday, bringing the total from the outbreak to 37.

The seven, all students at Hainan University, and another student suspected of having the illness were in quarantine at Haikou Municipal People's Hospital, a university spokesman said on Sunday.

More than 70 students with stomach problems were also receiving treatment at the hospital.

Students at Hainan University began complaining of diarrhea on Wednesday.

University authorities sealed off the campus on Saturday, and only authorized personnel and vehicles are being admitted. Students are banned from leaving the campus. Three of the five dining halls are closed and dormitory buildings and dining halls are being disinfected.

All the students and teaching staff were given preventative medicines.

Provincial vice governor Lin Fanglue was at the campus on Sunday morning to oversee measures taken to contain the outbreak.

Another 30 cases of cholera had been confirmed as of 11:00 AM on Friday in Danzhou City, but no deaths have been reported in the two cities.

An initial investigation by the provincial health bureau showed the acute intestinal illness started at a dining party in mid October in Huangyu Village, Danzhou City, where the first case was diagnosed on October 20.

Experts said floods in early October and the ensuing warm weather were ideal conditions for illnesses such as cholera, typhoid fever and diarrhea.

(Xinhua News Agency November 3, 2008)

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