Warning Issued After Diarrhoea Outbreak In Western Sydney Public Pools

Parasitic infection detected

29 January 2018

Article heading image for Warning Issued After Diarrhoea Outbreak In Western Sydney Public Pools

Swimmers making the most of the warm weather have been warned that a parasitic infection detected in western Sydney pools.

Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) has issued the warning after nine cases of Cryptosporidiosis - a diarrhoea-causing infection - has been discovered over the last two months.

Residents are reminded to wait at least two weeks before using public pools or shared facilities if they have recently experienced diarrhoea.

According to WSLHD public health unit director Shopna Bag, it can spread via drinking water or handling infected animals, and it lingers for several weeks after diarrhoea ends.

"If a swimmer swallows even a small amount of pool water after a contaminated person has been in the water, they can get infected," she said.

"They will start experiencing diarrhoea a few days later.

"There is no specific treatment for the condition and symptoms may last a few weeks in some people."

According to the Daily Telegraph, it is unclear where the patients contracted the infection.

Blacktown Council has said that there have been no reported instances at its facilities.

"Whilst there have been some reports in western Sydney...in the same period cases have also been reported as far afield as Tamworth, Wollongong, Randwick and Liverpool. This is a statewide issue, not a western Sydney specific issue," a Blacktown Council spokesperson said.

NSW Health has advised the following:

  • Do not swim or allow kids with diarrhoea to swim in a pool for at least two weeks after the diarrhoea stops;
  • Make sure that kids who aren't toilet trained have the appropriate waterproof, tight-fitting pants;
  • Take children for regular toilet breaks;
  • Wash with soap and water before swimming.
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