19 May 2014

Call to wait over American Samoa dysentery cause

7:49 pm on 19 May 2014

The executive director of the American Samoa Power Company Utu Abe Malae has warned against speculating that contaminated water is to blame for a dysentery outbreak.

About 30 people have been affected by amoebic dysentery.

The Health Department's medical director, John Tufa, said last week he suspects contaminated water to be the cause, as the cases are scattered over the island, and not concentrated in any one village.

But Utu says it is inappropriate to speculate when no definitive cause has yet been found.

He says the Health Department study is using incidents reports from the hospital's clinics.

The American Samoa Power Company operates the territory's water, sewage, and rubbish collection systems as well as electricity supply.