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County Issues Alert On Hepatitis Case In Erie

The Chautauqua County Health Department has been made aware of a confirmed case of hepatitis A in a person who works at the Cracker Barrel located at 7810 Interstate Drive in Erie, Pa. According to the Erie County (Pa.) Department of Health, the restaurant is following cleaning and employee health guidelines provided by their corporate management and by the Erie County Department of Health.

Customers who consumed food and/or drinks prepared by the restaurant on Feb. 12 to 21 are urged to get the vaccine as soon as possible after potentially being exposed. Consult your doctor, primary care provider, pharmacy, or the Chautauqua County Health Department to discuss your potential exposure.

Customers and their families should practice proper hand hygiene and wash hands frequently, especially after using the bathroom, changing diapers and before preparing and eating food.

Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease. It spreads through person-to-person contact or by eating contaminated food or drinks. Symptoms include fatigue (tiredness), loss of appetite, nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea, dark urine, joint pain or jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

While the risk of being affected is low, customers who consumed food and/or drinks prepared by the restaurant between Jan. 30 to Feb. 21 should watch for any symptoms of hepatitis A. It can take two to seven weeks after exposure before symptoms start to appear. If symptoms appear, seek medical attention.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the best way to prevent hepatitis A is to get vaccinated.

— Consult your doctor or primary care provider.

— Some pharmacies may have the vaccine. Availability may be limited.

— The Chautauqua County Health Department has vaccines available.

If you have questions, you may call the Chautauqua County Health Department at 716-753-4491.

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