ANGELES CITY -- At least 25 people were hospitalized after allegedly dining in a buffet restaurant inside a mall in this city over the past few days.
The victims were reportedly admitted in various hospitals including Angeles University Foundation Medical Center (AUFMC), The Medical City Clark (TMC), Sacred Heart Hospital, Saint Rafael Medical Center, Ospital ning Angeles, Angeles Medical Center and Makabali Memorial Hospital in the City of San Fernando.
An official of Clark International Airport Corporation said three of their employees are included in the list of victims.
One of them was confined at the TMC Clark while the two others were admitted at the AUFMC.
Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan said he immediately ordered an investigation after learning about the incident.
As soon as City Council Committee on Health Chairman Councilor Alex Indiongco informed the city mayor about the incident, he immediately asked the city administrator -- lawyer Dennis Pamintuan -- to conduct an investigation.
The city administrator then called the city's health office and the sanitation office to investigate and get the victims' statements to confirm if they all blame the restaurant for their ailment, said city information officer Jay Pelayo.
Pelayo added that the patients' statements will be the basis for temporary closure of the restaurant pending the investigation.
Dr. Lenario Santos, city health officer, said that his office received complaints last Thursday stating that two persons were hospitalized after eating at Yakimix Restaurant.
Santos said that the result of the initial examination conducted on patients admitted at the AUFMC showed amoeba (amoebiasis) caused by water contamination.
Amoebiasis is a type of gastroenteritis and is a cause of diarrhoea among travelers to developing countries.
Yesterday, doctors and personnel from the city health office and the Department of Health (DOH) Central Luzon office conducted rectal swab testing among the Yakimix employees, Mayor Pamintuan said.
"For the mean time, we will close the establishment within the day," he said.
A rectal swab is a procedure in which a small cotton swab is inserted into the rectum for the purpose of collecting samples to be tested for certain diseases and infections.
Fecal matter as well as tissue and sometimes mucus may be collected for and sent for testing.
Various types of viral, bacterial, and parasitic infections may be detected via rectal swab.