Chief Superintendent German Doria, Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA) director, assured yesterday the families of cadets that their children are safe even as he ordered a thorough investigation of the suspected food poisoning that affected some 287 PNPA cadets over the weekend.
Doria said that while they have yet to establish whether the incident was really an intentional case aimed to sabotage his administration, they have already undertaken strict measures to make sure it will not be repeated.
Based on a report by the PNPA Health Service (PNPA-HS), at around 9:30 p.m. on Saturday, cadets from the different batches were brought to their medical dispensary due to diarrhea, vomiting and crampy abdominal pain after eating food from the mess hall. According to the cadets, the food served to them were pork steak, radish with pork and beefsteak.
Out of the 287 cadets who were taken to the dispensary, 127 had to stay there overnight while the rest were able to go back to their barracks with “sick in quarters” status after being given medication.
Chief Inspector Cesar Estrella of the PNPA-HS said the patients showed signs of dehydration with intractable vomiting and severe cramp abdominal pain. Aside from antibiotics, the cadets were given intravenous fluids and Hyoscine N-butylbromide and Metoclopromide. Some of the cadets were also noted to have peripheral cyanosis, fever and chills for which oxygen inhalation and paracetamol were given to them.
Doria said the leftover food ad samples of stools and vomitus wee brought to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) in Alabang and the Bureau of Food and Drugs (BFAD) for routine examination, culture and sensitivity and chemical analysis to determine what caused the perceived poisoning of the cadets.
Pending the result of the BFAD and RITM examinations, Doria said he has created an investigating committee to look into the incident. The Cavite Police Provincial Office and the PNP Crime Laboratory is also conducting its investigation of the incident.