October 19, 2018

Employee at Tim Hortons in Monroe County, MI Diagnosed with Hepatitis A

An employee at Tim Hortons at 404 South Monroe Street in Monroe, Michigan has been diagnosed with hepatitis A, according to the Monroe County Health Department. The employee worked there from November 21, 2017 to December 8, 2017. Anyone who ate food or drank a beverage there during that time frame may have been exposed to the virus.

Hepatitis A

If you ate or drank anything there before November 28, 2017, it’s too late for you to get a hepatitis A or immune globulin vaccination, since those shots are only good for two weeks after exposure. You should monitor yourself for the symptoms of this illness for the next month.

The symptoms of hepatitis A include jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin), clay-colored stools, nausea, diarrhea, dark urine, lethargy, lack of appetite, vomiting, and stomach pain. This virus is very contagious, and people are infectious for two weeks before any symptoms appear.

The restaurant owners and employees are cooperating with MCHD. And the person diagnosed with this illness is not working and is receiving medical care.

Dr. Carl J. Schmidt, medical director with the health department said in a statement, “While hepatitis A can be very serious, we are fortunate to have an effective vaccine available. We encourage anyone concerned about possible exposure to speak with their health care provider or MCHD as soon as possible.”

Many counties in southeast Michigan have been experiencing large increases in this illness this year. The vaccine is available from pharmacies, health care providers, and local health departments.

To prevent the spread of the illness, wash your hands well with soap and water after using the bathroom, changing diapers, or taking care of someone who is sick, particularly with a diarrheal illness. While freezing foods doesn’t kill the virus, cooking does. And anyone who works with the public should consider getting a hepatitis A vaccine.

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