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A person infected with hepatitis A goes to work in the food and beverage industry. He or she provides customer service until a test comes back positive for Hep A. Health officials then recommend everyone who served during the period the infected worker was on duty get vaccinated for Hep A while there is still time.
The Arkansas Department of Health reported positive Hepatitis A test results came back on a Taco Bell employee who worked during that period.
Hepatitis A is a virus, or infection, that causes liver disease and inflammation of the liver. People usually get hepatitis A by having close contact with a person who is infected, from food or drinks prepared by someone who is infected, or by eating shellfish harvested from sewage-contaminated water.
The incubation period — the time from exposure to sickness — for hepatitis A is two to seven weeks. That length of time often is enough for people to get vaccinated and head off the illness.
Once people get hepatitis A, there is not any specific treatment.
Symptoms are flu-like, including tiredness, stomach discomfort, fever, decreased appetite, and diarrhea; light-colored stools; more specific symptoms include dark yellow urine and jaundice.
The Clay County Health Unit at 1009 S. Garfield, Piggott, AR, has immune globulin and hepatitis A vaccines available with an appointment. The contact number is 870-598-3390. There is no risk to Taco Bell customers who ate at the fast food outlet after Feb. 7, 2018, according to state health officials.
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