[THE INVESTOR] The mother of the Korean child who was diagnosed with the “hamburger disease” on July 3 filed a complaint with the prosecution against McDonald’s Korea for the alleged violation of local food safety rules.
The 4-year-old girl was hospitalized for 2 months in September, 2016, reportedly after eating a hamburger at a McDonald’s outlet in Korea. The child was initially diagnosed with Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome, HUS, and has been in need of an eight to ten hour peritoneal dialysis on a daily basis after losing about 90 percent of her kidney function.
Plaintiff Choi Eun-ju holds a picture of her daughter in front of Seoul District Prosecutors Office on July 5.
Korean girl faces lifetime dialysis after eating at McDonald’s
Due to the burdening medical bills, the mother of the child reached out to McDonald‘s in order to claim insurance but the restaurant denied any sort of responsibility by stating that the medical report did not specify the food that caused the disease, which according medical experts is never indicated in a report.
“Even though the child had been diagnosed with HUS at two separate hospitals, McDonald’s still insisted that the medical report needed to specify the food that caused the illness. The mother and the father of the girl even participated in a genetics test to prove that the disease was not hereditary, but McDonald‘s is still firm on its stance,” said lawyer Hwang Da-yeon in a radio interview with MBC.
McDonald’s has also denied any link between its product and the child’s illness, saying that none of their hamburgers had any issues when the ingredients on the day of the incident were checked. The restaurant chain also iterated that the meat is cooked mechanically, which eliminates any sort of human error. However, according to the internal data submitted to Hwang, the hamburger patties can still be undercooked because the grill’s temperature varies depending the spot the meat is placed.
“Although McDonald‘s claims that it’s impossible to serve undercooked meat as all foods are cooked mechanically, it’s been found that some stores failed to fully cook the food by putting the grill on the wrong settings or by not placing the meat in the right position,“ said Hwang.
The victim‘s family plans to request a court order against the company for evidence preservation including surveillance videos, and is also seeking to file a compensation suit.
By Alex Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org