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Survivor of 'poisoned' beef wellington meal in Australia discharged from hospital

The sole survivor from a group of people who ate a beef wellington meal laced with suspected poisonous mushrooms has been released from hospital - almost two months after falling ill.

Three people who sat at the table on 29 July were sick by midnight, with one dying the next day and two a week later.

In a case that has gripped Australia, a homicide investigation has been opened, with Erin Patterson - who served the four family members the meal at her home - a suspect.

Ian Wilkinson, 68, had been fighting for his life since then, but his family has confirmed the reverend has made "significant progress in his recovery" and is now out of hospital.

"This milestone marks a moment of immense relief and gratitude for Ian and the entire Wilkinson family," they said in a statement.

The family thanked the Leongatha, Dandenong and Austin hospitals for their "unwavering dedication".

"The medical team's expertise and compassion have been a source of comfort and hope throughout this journey."

Ms Patterson has denied any wrongdoing, after hosting the meal at her home in Leongatha.

Her former in-laws Don and Gail Patterson, both 70, were among those who ate the meal, while Gail Patterson's sister, Heather Wilkinson, 66 - who was also Mr Wilkinson's husband - were there too.

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Gail Patterson and Mrs Wilkinson died nearly a week later, on 4 August, and Don Patterson died the next day.

Erin Patterson's two children were at the cinema at the time.

Speaking outside her home last month, she said: "I didn't do anything, I love them and I'm devastated they are gone."

She added she is "so sorry" they have lost their lives - "I just can't believe it."

In a written statement to police, she said she had "absolutely no reason to hurt these people whom I loved".

She told officers she served the meal and allowed the guests to choose their own plates, while she took the last plate and ate some of the beef wellington herself.

Ms Patterson added she suffered bad stomach pains and diarrhoea after the meal and was hospitalised, adding she was transported by ambulance from the Leongatha Hospital to the Monash Medical Centre in Melbourne on 31 July.

She said the mushrooms used to prepare the meal were a mixture of button mushrooms purchased at a supermarket, and dried mushrooms purchased at an Asian grocery store in Melbourne several months ago, which were in a hand-labelled packet.

Police have said the investigation is likely to be lengthy due to the complexity of the case.