November 12, 2020

Hepatitis A Exposure at The New White Steamer in Indiana

Anyone who dined at The New White Steamer at 21 East Main Street in Washington, Indiana from May 12 to May 15, 2020 may have been exposed to hepatitis A, according to a release by the Daviess County Health Department. The press release did not have many details, and did not say whether or not a food handler was sick or if there was any other source of the exposure.

Hepatitis A Exposure at The New White Steamer in Indiana

That means that anyone who ate there on May 12, 2020 must get a hepatitis A or immune globulin vaccination by today, May 26, 2020. The vaccine is only effective if given within two weeks of exposure.

But the notice states that anyone who ate at The New White Steamer from 5/12/20 through 5/15/20 can get a vaccination on Wednesday, May 27, 2020 at The National Guard Armory at 500 NorthEast 6th Street in Washington, Indiana. The hours of the clinic are 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

It may be a good idea to call your healthcare provider about this exposure, since the clinic is being held one day after the last day a vaccine is most effective for some of the diners. If you have been vaccinated against hepatitis A in the past, or if you have had the illness you are considered immune.

Symptoms of hepatitis A include fatigue, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain or discomfort, especially in the upper right quadrant of the body, loss of appetite, dark urine, light clay-colored stools, a low grade fever, and joint pain. These symptoms usually start 15 to 50 days after exposure. A person who is infected can pass the illness on to others for two weeks before symptoms even start.

The best way to prevent the spread of this viral illness is with vaccination. Other ways include staying home when you are sick, washing your hands well after using the bathroom and taking care of someone who is sick, and washing your hands well before preparing or serving food.

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