Health Alert: Potential Hepatitis A Exposure at Local Restaurant

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 12, 2019
For More Information, Contact Larry Hill, Eastern Region PIO, 757-683-9175

Health Alert: Potential Hepatitis A Exposure at Local Restaurant

(Newport News, Va.) — The Peninsula Health District (PHD) is issuing the following alert: an employee at Ginny’s Restaurant located at 1900-A George Washington Memorial Hwy, Yorktown, Virginia, was recently diagnosed with Hepatitis A. As a result, persons who consumed food or drinks from Ginny’s Restaurant on any of the following dates – August 22, 23, 28, 29, and September 4, 2019 – may have been exposed to Hepatitis A. The restaurant has been cooperating fully with the Peninsula Health District in identifying and mitigating any risk. There is no indication of any food products at this restaurant being the source of the infection.

Individuals who have not been previously vaccinated and have never had Hepatitis A infection are susceptible to the disease, and may be at risk if they ate or drank anything from Ginny’s Restaurant on the dates mentioned above. These individuals may benefit from vaccine to prevent Hepatitis A if received within two weeks from the date of exposure. Hepatitis A vaccine is available at various urgent care clinics and pharmacies. It is also available at the Peninsula Health District for free or at a reduced cost.

Hepatitis A is a virus that causes inflammation of the liver. It can be spread by direct contact with another person who has the infection, by consuming contaminated food or drink, or by touching surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. The classic symptom of Hepatitis A is jaundice, which is a yellowing of the skin or the eyes. Other symptoms include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, and light-colored stools. Symptoms develop 15-50 days after exposure to the virus. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of Hepatitis A, you should contact your medical provider immediately.

It is very important for anyone who has symptoms of Hepatitis A to stay home from work, especially if they work in food service, healthcare, or childcare. Frequent hand washing with soap and warm water after using the bathroom, after changing a diaper, or before preparing food can help prevent the spread of hepatitis A.

If you have any questions related to Hepatitis A or the vaccine, contact the Peninsula Health District at 757-594-7427 or your local health department. For more information, visit http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/immunization/hav/.