"The team at Irwin Mitchell has a ‘pre-eminent reputation’ for travel personal injury work"

Legal 500 (2016)

San Antonio Hotel, 2016

We're concerned to learn about illness among guests at the San Antonio Resort in Malta in July this year.

Our specialist International Personal Injury team has been contacted by a family of four who travelled to the resort. They report that during their stay one of them developed severe diarrhoea, nausea, sickness, abdominal cramps and lethargy. The family noticed that food was sometimes left uncovered for long periods of time, and had suspicions that some of it was being reheated. They were concerned that the food was at times of a poor quality and unappetising.

One of them became so ill they had to be hospitalised. The family has told us that after being tested back in the UK they've been informed that their illness may have been caused by the pathogen campylobacter.

We spoke to gastric health expert Lisa Ackerley about campylobacter. She advised: "Campylobacter is the most common cause of bacterial food poisoning and once contracted, it can take 2-5 days to show signs of symptoms. This is known as the incubation period. Whilst chicken is associated with 4/5 cases of campylobacter, according to the Food Standards Agency, it may not be eating chicken that is causing the problem, but rather how it is prepared or handled. For example, it is possible to contract campylobacter from the packaging of the chicken. If the individual who is preparing the chicken has not washed their hands thoroughly with soap and warm water after handling raw chicken or chicken packaging, then the campylobacter can be passed onto the cooked meat if the individual later touches the meat to plate it up. Alternatively, campylobacter can be contracted through consumption of undercooked meat."

Lisa's advise demonstrates the importance of rigorous hygiene procedures when preparing food. The severe gastric illness suffered by this family of holidaymakers shows how serious the effects can be when the proper procedures are not upheld.

Gastric symptoms can range from mild diarrhoea to abdominal cramps and blood in stools. We have significant experience helping those who've been unfortunate enough to contract gastric illness, and we know the potential long term effects that can result, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

If you also travelled to the San Antonio Resort in Malta and suffered symptoms of gastric illness or sustained an injury, we'd like to hear from you too. We specialise in dealing with cases of this nature and could help you claim compensation.

For more advice on making a holiday illness claim, contact us on 0800 056 0066 or complete our enquiry form and we will call you back.

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"We were very happy with the outcome of our case, especially as we were initially offered nothing from the Tour Operator. Irwin Mitchell were very professional throughout and we are very happy with the outcome."

Chris and Michael, Worksop