Five women have been admitted to hospital in the past fortnight suffering from cholera after eating contaminated seafood. But health officials said there was no evidence of an outbreak. The Inter-departmental Committee on the Prevention and Control of Cholera has nevertheless put out an alert and will meet soon as the disease is expected to remain active over the summer. The latest cases represent the first since March, when more than 30 people were taken ill after eating contaminated cockles imported from Thailand. Others infected around the same time were tourists who ate under-cooked seafood or bought food from street hawkers in Thailand. A Department of Health spokesman said the five latest confirmed cases were sporadic ones with neither family nor social links. The victims came from different districts. Three have been treated and discharged while the other two, aged 42 and 46, were yesterday in a stable condition at the Princess Margaret Hospital's infectious diseases ward. The spokesman did not want to say which districts the patients had come from but they first sought treatment at Kwong Wah Hospital, Mongkok; United Christian Hospital, Kwun Tong; and the Princess Margaret in Kwai Chung. One of the women had been outside Hong Kong but the department would not release the location. The other four had consumed shellfish and bivalves during the incubation period. Department consultant Dr Mak Kwok-hang said seafood should be cooked and cleaned thoroughly, and cross-contamination of raw and cooked food avoided. Fifty-eight cholera cases have been confirmed this year.