February 25, 2020

Worker with Hepatitis A at Applebee’s in Winchester, KY

A worker at the Applebee’s restaurant at 1525 West Lexington Avenue in Winchester, New York has been diagnosed with hepatitis A, according to a public health advisory posted by the Clark County Health Department. That person worked there from November 14 through November 25, 2018.

Hepatitis A Vaccine

That means it is too late to get a hepatitis A or immune globulin vaccination, since the shot is only effective if given within two weeks of exposure. If you ate food or drank beverages there during that time period, all you can do is monitor yourself for the symptoms of hepatitis A.

Those symptoms include dark urine, lethargy, clay-colored stools, fever, loss of appetite, weight loss, stomach pain, nausea, and jaundice, which is yellowing of the eyes and skin. These symptoms can appear anywhere from two weeks to 50 days after exposure.

This virus is very contagious. It is spread through the fecal-oral route. And unfortunately, anyone with that virus is contagious for two weeks before they start showing symptoms.

Public health officials state that the best way to prevent outbreaks of this illness is for people to get vaccinated. Most pharmacies and doctor’s offices offer the vaccines.

Other prevention methods are to wash your hands well with soap and water after using the bathroom, before preparing or serving food and drink for others, and after taking care of someone who is sick.

The Applebee’s staff is working with Environmental Health and the restaurant has been thoroughly cleaned. The ill person is not working at the restaurant and will remain off work until he or she has been cleared to return.

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