AN outbreak of cryptosporidium at Greenmeadow community farm, Cwmbran - which affected 10 people - has been declared over.

The disease, common in young farm animals, can easily be passed to people coming into contact with them.

Public Health Wales, Torfaen council and the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency, have investigated the outbreak since early in April.  Tests showed those who were ill had the same strain of the illness as lambs and kid goats at the farm, which were removed.

Dr Lika Nehaul, consultant in communicable disease control, said Public Health Wales is confident the removal of the affected animals has removed the source, and the outbreak can be declared over.

"Nine of those who were unwell were staff or volunteers who had fed the animals by hand," he said.

"Only one case was in a visitor. In the time between the kid goats and lambs arriving at the farm and the last case being confirmed, there had been almost 7,000 visitors, which will reassure the public that the risk was extremely small.

"I would like to remind the public that handwashing with warm running water and soap after coming into contact with farm animals is of the utmost importance in preventing infection with cryptosporidium and that use of disinfectant hand gels and wipes alone are not enough."

Cryptosporidium causes watery diarrhoea, stomach pain, nausea and vomiting and can last up to a month, but healthy people usually make a full recovery.