Alberta Health Services have confirmed a case of Hepatitis A in Nanton in an individual who, while infected with the disease, was involved in food handling.

AHS is asking anyone who may have eaten at the Auditorium Hotel restaurant On Friday, January 11 and the following Friday, January 18, or had bannock at J.T. Foster School on Thursday, January 17 to call Health Link, (811) for assessment of exposure and risk.

These individuals will be given information regarding planned immunization clinics, as needed.

Hepatitis A immunization can be provided within 14 days after an exposure and can often prevent illness from occurring.

AHS says there's no ongoing risk of infection associated with the restaurant, which has been cleaned, inspected and approved safe to operate.

For those that ate at J.T. Foster AHS says, those individuals are being contacted directly by AHS Public Health through the school, and immunization clinics are being arranged.

Anyone who believes they may have been exposed is advised to monitor for symptoms of Hepatitis A until at least Friday, March 8 as illness can occur 15 to 50 days after exposure.

Alberta Health Services issued a release regarding the issue:

Symptoms of hepatitis A may include: tiredness; poor appetite; nausea and vomiting; abdominal pain and fever; followed by dark-coloured urine, light-coloured stools, and yellowing of eyes and skin several days later. Some people, especially young children, may get hepatitis A infection without noticing any symptoms; however, they are still infectious to others.

“While we believe the risk to the public is low, hepatitis A is a serious infection,” says Dr. Jia Hu, Medical Officer of Health, AHS Calgary Zone. “As a precaution, anyone who consumed food at the Auditorium Hotel on January 11 and 18 or bannock at J.T. Foster School on January 17 are advised to monitor themselves and their family for symptoms for 50 days after their last exposure.”

Hepatitis A is an infection of the liver caused by a virus. Spread through the fecal-oral route, individuals primarily contract hepatitis A through direct contact with an infected person; however, individuals can also contract the illness indirectly by ingestion of contaminated food or water.

If an infected individual does not properly wash his/her hands after using the washroom, the virus can be transmitted through food and beverages prepared by the infected individual.



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