A team of investigators from the Philippines Department of Health (DOH) will arrive today in Bacolod City to attempt to determine what sickened some 145 students in the village of Barangay Handumanan, according to local media.

Philippines schoolkids Image/eunsookim7
Philippines schoolkids

In the past several days, 145 students from Handumanan Elementary School have been hospitalized with symptoms of food poisoning.

DOH-Western Visayas regional epidemiologist Jessie Glen Alonsabe said the DOH is lending assistance to the city by collecting specimen to facilitate sending them to the Research Institute of Tropical Medicine in Manila for further confirmation of the findings of local hospitals, and for viral isolation.

In addition, Alonsabe says the source of the outbreak could be food  or water and some combination.

Patients from other villages were also affected to include Brgys. Felisa, Cabug, and Banago.

Bacolod Schools Division Superintendent Cynthia Demavivas said there are no classes at the Handumanan Elementary School 1 from Friday until Tuesday to contain the outbreak. The students will return to school on Thursday. Wednesday is a city holiday.