AHS investigating whether under-cooked chicken served to hundreds at Edmonton EXPO drop-in centre

A look at how the Edmonton Expo Centre is being used for the city's homeless and vulnerable populations amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Courtesy, AHS

Alberta Health Services is investigating after it says patrons of the drop-in program at the Edmonton EXPO Centre may have been served under-cooked chicken.

According to Kerry Williamson from AHS, there are currently no confirmed cases of illness.

The chicken may have been served to 300 to 500 Edmonton EXPO Centre clients and staff on Friday, April 17, over the lunch hour.

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The EXPO Centre opened in late March as a daytime drop-in program and a self-isolation area for members of the city’s vulnerable population who have nowhere else to self-isolate when they are showing symptoms of COVID-19.

“The health and safety of everyone currently staying at or visiting the EXPO Centre is our top priority,” said a statement from Williamson Sunday.

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“AHS would like to reassure those at the EXPO Centre that is an isolated incident and there is little ongoing risk to the public due to this outbreak.”

Signage has been put up at the centre and staff are working with clients to let them know of potential symptoms to watch out for.

Williamson said AHS is also working with other shelters and programs in Edmonton, as well as local hospitals, to keep an eye out for symptoms.

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Williamson said the Environmental Public Health team has taken food samples for further analysis, and AHS is working with the Boyle McCauley Health Centre team onsite at the EXPO Centre, to ensure that proper amenities are prepared if people experience symptoms.

Boyle McCauley runs the isolation health centre at the EXPO, along with AHS.

Williamson said the kitchen, which is run by EXPO Centre employees, has also been inspected by Environmental Public Health, which was satisfied it met Alberta Public Health Act requirements.

Symptoms of food poisoning include diarrhea, feeling sick to your stomach, and vomiting.


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