The Nassau County Department of Health is investigating a confirmed case of Hepatitis A virus in a food handler who worked at Park Delicatessen, located at 1420 Park Avenue in North Merrick. Patrons who consumed foods prepared on-site between August 2-5, August 9-11, August 16-18 and August 20, 2016 and may have been exposed to Hepatitis A.

Hepatitis A/CDC
Hepatitis A/CDC

Since the recommendation for immunization against Hepatitis A is within two weeks of exposure to a person with Hepatitis A infection, patrons are advised to observe for symptoms of Hepatitis A and consult with their health care provider if they are experiencing symptoms of illness. Individuals who have been vaccinated for Hepatitis A or who have had the illness in the past are protected from Hepatitis A infection, and considered immune.

Hepatitis A is caused by the Hepatitis A virus. Hepatitis A virus may be spread by consuming food or drink that has been handled by an infected person. It may also be spread from person to person by placing something into the mouth that has been contaminated with the stool of a person with
Hepatitis A.

The symptoms of Hepatitis A may range from mild to severe and include an abrupt onset of fever, fatigue, poor appetite, nausea, stomach pain, dark-colored urine and jaundice (a yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes). The disease is rarely fatal and most people recover in a few weeks without any complications. The symptoms commonly appear within 28 days of exposure, with a range of 15-50 days.

There are no special medicines or antibiotics that can be used to treat a person once symptoms appear. Generally, bed rest is all that is needed. Thorough hand washing after bathroom use, and before, during and after food preparation is the most important means to prevent the spread of this and other intestinal illnesses. Sharing of food and utensils should be discouraged especially whenever anyone is ill.