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Cause still sought, may never be known, in Calgary daycare E. coli breakout

EDMONTON — Alberta’s chief medical officer says the exact cause of a massive E. coli outbreak at Calgary daycares may never be known. 

Dr. Mark Joffe says investigators are checking thousands of pieces of information as they continue to try to narrow the source of the outbreak that has led to hundreds of illnesses and the closure of multiple daycares over the past two weeks.

The 11 daycares at the root of the breakout shared a commercial kitchen, which is considered the likely source of the outbreak and has been shut indefinitely.

Joffe says the investigation is massive and complex as a team of researchers are listing and comparing food histories over a two-week period for 1,150 children and 250 daycare staff.

Officials say the initial outbreak appears to have levelled off at just under 350 confirmed cases.

There are eight children in hospital, one less than a day earlier.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 19, 2023

The Canadian Press