Worker in Edmonton restaurant had hepatitis A while preparing food on the job
CTV News Edmonton
Published Monday, September 9, 2019 12:17PM MDT
Last Updated Monday, September 9, 2019 2:22PM MDT
Alberta Health Services has issued a public alert after a restaurant worker in Edmonton tested positive for hepatitis A.
The employee participated in preparing food at the London Local restaurant at 2307 Ellwood Drive SW while infectious.
Anyone who consumed food from the restaurant between Aug. 13 to Aug. 18, Aug. 20 to Aug. 24 or on Aug. 27, could have been exposed to hepatitis A and should call Health Link 811 immediately.
Anyone who calls Health Link will be advised about eligibility for immunization. Immunization can only be provided for up to 14 days after exposure and can prevent illness.
Hepatitis A is an infection of the liver and is usually contracted through contact with an infected person, but can also occur from ingestion of contaminated food or water.
Symptoms of hepatitis A can include tiredness, poor appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, fever, dark-coloured urine and a yellowing of the eyes and lightening of the skin.
Some people can contract the illness without showing any symptoms, but are still infectious to others.
Illness can occur within 15 to 50 days after exposure, so anyone who has eaten at the restaurant is urged to monitor for symptoms for the next month.
“While we believe the risk to the public is low, hepatitis A is a serious infection,” said Dr. Chris Sikora, Medical Officer of Health, AHS Edmonton Zone in a news release. “Calling Health Link and monitoring yourself and your family for symptoms are important precautions.”
An inspection by AHS found that the restaurant did not have a written employee policy on employee illness. It also found that the restaurant does not have all the adequate facilities to clean and sanitize utensils, and that there was organic build-up on the ice machine at the bar.
AHS says the restaurant has complied with their investigation, and there is currently no risk to the public.
In a Facebook post, London Local said its employee reported not feeling well on Aug. 27. The person was immediately sent home and has not returned to work since then.