September 18, 2020

Possible Hepatitis A Exposure at Gumbo Pot in Vicksburg, MS

An employee of the Gumbo Pot, located at 3401 Halls Ferry Road #5 in Vicksburg, Mississippi, has been diagnosed with a hepatitis A infection, according to the Mississippi State Department of Health. That means that anyone who ate at that facility on January 17, 18, and 22, 2020 may have been exposed to the virus. The restaurant is located in Warren County, Mississippi.

Possible Hepatitis A Exposure at Gumbo Pot in Vickburg, MS

Since the vaccination against hepatitis A is only effective if given within two weeks of exposure, only people who were at that restaurant on January 22, 2020 qualify for the shot. They can get a vaccine free of charge from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm on Tuesday, February 4, 2020 at the Warren County Health Department at 807 Monroe Street in Vicksburg. The last day for this group to get a vaccination is February 5, 2020.

If you ate there on January 17 or 18, 2020, call your doctor to ask about a vaccination. If he or she says it wouldn’t be effective for you, you need to monitor your health for the symptoms of hepatitis A. They include a fever, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, clay-colored stools, dark urine, and jaundice, which is yellowing of the skin or eyes. If you do get sick, see your doctor.

The risk of actually contracting the virus is low, but people need to be aware that it could happen. MSDH State 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 on January 22nd should consider getting a hepatitis A vaccination if they have not done so already. And again, those who may have been exposed on January 17th and 18th should watch for any possible symptoms of hepatitis A and see their doctor if become ill. The management and staff of the Gumbo Pot are fully cooperating with MSDH to prevent illnesses as a result of this exposure.”

There is an ongoing hepatitis A outbreak in Mississippi and in surrounding states. The best way to prevent the spread of this illness is to stay home from work or school if you are sick, and to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after using the bathroom and before preparing food.

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