Health officer in Australia loses job after nursing home outbreak

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A major food poisoning outbreak at a nursing home led to the dismissal of a chief health officer in Victoria, Australia, this week.

The gastroenteritis-like outbreak killed four residents and sickened 21 in the facility, which is located in Camberwell, a suburb of Melbourne. Government officials are scrutinizing the provider, Benetas, which manages the facility, because the outbreak was kept hidden from health authorities for five days - even after two residents died.

Victorian Health Minister Bronwyn Pike fired Chief Health Officer Dr. Robert Hall on Sunday. A string of communication lapses made her lose confidence in him, she said. The outbreak is being considered one of Victoria's worst public health failures.