Health officials are urging customers of a Garrett bar to get the Hepatitis A vaccine after a possible exposure was discovered.
The Garrett Police Department wrote on its Facebook page Thursday that an exposure took place at Martin’s Tavern at 115 N Randolph St.
Police said an employee was diagnosed with Hepatitis A. The infectious period when the employee worked was on Feb. 1-2 and Feb. 5-9, 2019. Health officials said anyone who consumed food or drink at Martin’s Tavern on February 7-9 should receive vaccination by Feb. 23.
Hepatitis A is a viral infection of the liver that can cause loss of appetite, nausea, tiredness, fever, stomach pain, brown-colored urine, and light-colored stools. Yellowing of the skin or eyes may also appear.
People can become ill up to 7 weeks after being exposed to the virus.
The virus spreads when an infected person does not wash their hands adequately after using the restroom or engages in behaviors that increase risk of infection.
Martin’s Tavern was working with Garrett police to prevent any new cases from arising in the community as a result of the case.
Symptoms can include fatigue, loss of appetite, stomach pain, nausea, and jaundice, which usually appear within two months of infection. Individuals can become ill 15 to 50 days after being exposed to the virus. A doctor can determine if someone has Hepatitis A with a blood test.
Police say the vaccine must be administered within two weeks after the last date of exposure. Individuals who consumed food or drink before February 7 are outside of the window for post-exposure and are advised to monitor for symptoms.
Vaccinations are being administered at the DeKalb County Health Department at 220 East 7th Street Suite 110, Auburn Indiana for those with potential exposure to Hepatitis A during the specified dates.
• Friday, February 22nd – Noon – 4:00 pm
• Saturday, February 23rd – 10:00 am – Noon
Anyone who consumed food and/or drinks at the Martin’s Tavern on February, 1-2, and 5-9 is also asked to:
1. Monitor their health for symptoms of Hepatitis A infection up to 50 days after exposure.
2. Wash their hands with soap and warm water frequently and thoroughly, especially after using the bathroom and before preparing food.
3. Stay at home and contact their healthcare provider immediately if symptoms of Hepatitis A infection develop.
CDC recommends Hepatitis A vaccination for the following groups:
• All children at age 1 year
• Travelers to countries that have high rates of Hepatitis A
• Family members and caregivers of recent adoptees from countries where Hepatitis A is common
• Men who have sexual contact with other men
• People who use injection and non-injection illegal drugs
• People with chronic (lifelong) liver diseases, such as Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C
• People who are treated with clotting-factor concentrates
• People who work with Hepatitis A infected animals or in a Hepatitis A research laboratory
Anyone who is exhibiting symptoms of Hepatitis A should contact a healthcare provider immediately and refrain from preparing food for others.