A council says it has tracked down
about 100 of the 650 people who attended a dance camp in Pembrokeshire
where two girls contracted E.coli.
Environmental health officials are in
the process of contacting the remaining 550 via letters, e-mails, phoning
and social networking website Facebook.
The outbreak's source is being probed
after an 11-year-old from the West Midlands was taken to hospital.
A seven-year-old from Denbighshire is
at home recovering.
Both had attended Dance Camp Wales in
Cresselly, which ran between 29 July and 9 August.
The camp's organisers said people
from across the UK and Europe were being contacted to see if there are
National Public Health Service for Wales (NPHS) said they were helping
them and Pembrokeshire council try to get in touch with as many people as
A spokeswoman said they had turned to
Facebook because the event has its own group on the website.
"There were around 650 people
who attended and we are sending letters out first thing Monday
morning," she said.
"We are also using Facebook,
e-mails and phone calls to try to get hold of people as soon as
Jeff Beynon, who is food, safety and
port manager for Pembrokeshire council said around 100 people who
attended the camp had been contacted over the weekend.
With only two cases, it's very
difficult to find a common cause
John Bilsborough, Dance Camp Wales
He said officers would continue
contacting the remaining people. They were also looking to try and
pinpoint the source of the infection.
However, because E.coli can be
acquired from a wide range of sources, this was proving to be
problematic, he said.
Risk factors include direct or
indirect contact with animals or their faeces, bathing in contaminated
water, person to person transmission and infection from food.
"We are trying to keep all our
options open. We are not ruling out any possible source," said Mr
John Bilsborough, who helps run the
camp, said about a third of those there were children.
He said there had never been any
previous health problems in the 24 years the 10-day event has been
"The environmental health people
are getting in touch with everybody who was at the camp to see if there
any more cases," he said.
"With only two cases, it's very
difficult to find a common cause.
"If they find they were camping
together or came together or were swimming in the estuary together, they
might have something to go on."
The NPHS said the 11-year-old girl is
not in intensive care in hospital.
It said anyone who attend the dance
camp and is experiencing symptoms that may be associated with E.coli O157
infection should contact their GP or out of hours service for medical
advice as a matter of urgency.
The serious bacterial infection
causes abdominal pain and diarrhoea and symptoms range from mild
diarrhoea, stomach cramps and fever to bloody diarrhoea.
Most people recover without
complications, but the most severe cases can develop kidney failure.
• The latest E.coli cases come after
an outbreak of the bug in Wrexham three weeks ago, which left four people
Karen Morrisroe-Clutton, 32, remains
seriously ill in hospital but is out of a medically-induced coma.
Abigail Hennessey, three, was in
hospital for two weeks and had dialysis for five days, but is now
The Llay Fish Bar, in Llay, is closed
while an investigation to pinpoint a possible source continues.
Dr Jörg Hoffmann, consultant in
communicable disease control for the NPHS, said people could become
infected with E.coli O157 by direct or indirect contact with animal
faeces, particularly on farms and sites used for camping, and swimming in
or drinking unchlorinated water.
People who experience symptoms are
asked to contact Pembrokeshire council's public protection department on
01437 764551 (1000 - 1800 BST on weekends and between 0800 - 1800 BST on
weekdays) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.