Balinese authorities are awaiting the results of autopsies to determine what killed a Queensland mother and her teenage daughter during a holiday that went tragically wrong over the weekend.
Noelene Bischoff, 54, a nurse from the Sunshine Coast, and her daughter, Yvana, 14, fell ill suddenly on Friday night and died within hours of each other: Ms Bischoff en route to the Bali International Medical Clinic and her daughter, while being treated.
Speculation is now rife about whether food poisoning or an allergic reaction is to blame. The pair had mahi mahi, a pelagic fish, a chicken curry and vegetarian pizza about four hours before Yvana raised the alarm with hotel staff. While ciguatera, a form of food poisoning that comes from reef fish, is common, it is rarely fatal.
Brisbane’s The Courier Mail suggested “toxic” fish may be responsible, but the manager of the Padang Bai Beach resort, where the pair were staying and dined, denies it, telling the ABC that other guests ate similar meals without reporting problems.
Police are investigating both the meal and medication reportedly found in their room.
Ms Bischoff’s younger brother Malcolm Bischoff told Fairfax Media that the family was unaware of any food allergies, and that the pair were “best mates”.
‘‘It was a blessing that they went together I suppose, because they would have been lost without each other,’’ he said.
Mr Bischoff added that he’d spoken to the resort manager, who said they seemed ill when they arrived from Ubud at around 3pm, but dismissed it, wondering how anyone who was sick could go out for dinner.
It’s reported that Ms Bischoff did her university thesis on food poisoning.
The Department of Foreign Affairs says Australia’s Consulate-General in Bali is liaising with local authorities and the government is providing consular assistance to the family in Australia.
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