April 4, 2020

Hepatitis A in Food Worker at Papa John’s Pizza in Horn Lake, MS

A food worker at Papa John’s Pizza at 906 Goodman Road in Horn Lake, Mississippi has been diagnosed with hepatitis A. according to a news release by the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDA). That person worked at the restaurant while infectious from January 28, 2020 to February 11, 2020.

Hepatitis A in Food Worker at Papa John's Pizza in Horn Lake, MS

That means that anyone who ate or drank at that restaurant or who received a pizza delivery during that time frame may have been exposed to the virus. Unfortunately, it’s too late for a vaccine for anyone who was there before February 5, 2020, because the vaccine is only effective if given within 14 days of exposure.

Those people should monitor their health for the symptoms of hepatitis A and see a doctor if the symptoms appear. Symptoms of hepatitis A include fever, jaundice yellowing of the skin and eyes), abdominal pain, dark urine, clay colored stools, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.

Everyone else who ate at that restaurant or received a pizza delivery during the time the employee was working should get a hepatitis A or immune globulin vaccination. These vaccinations will be available free of charge from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm on Thursday, February 20, 2020, and Friday, February 21, 2020, at the De Soto County Health Department at 8705 Northwest Drive, Building A, Suite 1, in Southaven, Mississippi.

MDSH Stte Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers said in a statement, “The risk of transmission of hepatitis A in this situation is likely very low. However, as a precaution, we recommend that anyone who ate food from this restaurant between February 6th and February 11th should consider getting a hepatitis A vaccination if they have not done so already. And again, those who may have been exposed between January 28th and February 5th should watch for any possible symptoms of hepatitis A and see their doctor if they become ill. The management and staff of the Papa John’s are fully cooperating with MSDH to prevent illnesses as a result of this exposure.”


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