December 14, 2018

Employee at Wendy’s in Ripley, WV Diagnosed with Hepatitis A

An employee at the Wendy’s restaurant in Ripley, West Virginia was diagnosed with hepatitis A, according to news reports. There is no information about this issue on the Jackson County Health Department website, although the health officer of that agency is quoted in articles.

Hepatitis A Wendy's Ripley WV

The employee worked between September 14 and September 24, 2018. Anyone who ate at that Wendy’s restaurant during that time period may have been exposed to the hepatitis A virus.

Dr. I John Snyder, Jackson County health officer, said in a statement, “While the risk of contracting Hepatitis A from visiting this restaurant is very low, people who have not been vaccinated against Hepatitis A and who consumed food at the restaurant between Sept. 14, 2018, and Sept. 24, 2018, should consider getting the Hepatitis A vaccine not more than two weeks from the potential exposure to help prevent infection.” The hepatitis A and immune globulin vaccinations are the shots that prevent this illness.

Inspectors visited the Wendy’s facility to observe food handling procedures. The restaurant closed voluntarily to clean and sanitize. After an inspection by Health Department officials, it has since reopened.

Anyone who has the hepatitis A virus is contagious for two weeks before symptoms appear. The virus is very contagious and is spread through person-to-person contact, contact with objects, and through food and beverages.

Symptoms of hepatitis A include loss of appetite, tiredness, nausea, fever, dark urine, clay colored stools, jaundice, and abdominal and stomach pain. People start feeling ill 2 weeks to 50 days after they are exposed. Some people can be carriers and never get sick.

Hepatitis A can be prevented through thorough handwashing. People who work with the public, especially in food service and healthcare, should consider being vaccinated against the virus. And anyone who is sick, especially with a diarrheal illness, should stay home from work or school until they are well.

Comments

  1. Where you get the shots at? are they free?

    • Linda Larsen says:

      It’s too late to get shots in this particular case, because the two week window has passed. But you can call your local health department and ask about vaccinations. Many offer the shots on a sliding scale, depending on income, and some offer free shots.

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