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Thousands Potentially Exposed to Hepatitis A at Hamptons Restaurant

An estimated 6,750 people who ate at a Long Island restaurant last month may have been exposed to Hepatitis A through a seasonal waiter diagnosed with the virus and hospitalized for four days.

Suffolk County health officials said Friday that the waiter worked at The Driver’s Seat restaurant in Southampton, NY, from Aug. 6-20. No other employees there have had symptoms of the infectious liver disease, they added.

The restaurant, which remains open, posted a notice on its website indicating that the employee, who is no longer employed there, was not involved in the preparation or handling of food and had contracted the virus during overseas travel.

The Suffolk County Department of Health is offering free Hep A vaccinations or immune globulin to anyone who ate at the restaurant between Aug. 16-20.

Symptoms of Hep A include fever, fatigue, nausea, poor appetite, stomach pain, dark-colored urine and jaundice. It can be spread by eating food or drinking liquid handled by someone infected with the virus or through fecal contamination.

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