Second Sudbury deli clerk tests positive for hepatitis A
SUDBURY -- Public health officials in Sudbury are issuing another warning after a second deli clerk at the local Real Canadian Superstore tests positive for hepatitis A.
The first case was confirmed on Dec. 15 involving another employee from the deli counter at the same store on Lasalle Boulevard.
Public Health Sudbury & Districts says anyone who ate meat or cheese from the deli department of the store, including clerk-served products and prepared trays, purchased between Nov. 27, 2019 and Jan. 2, 2020 could be at risk of hepatitis A infection.
Health officials say based on information to date, both cases involve only deli food and not any other food in the store.
Dr. Ariella Zbar is the Associate Medical Officer of Health with Public Health Sudbury & Districts.
"Anyone who ate the affected food purchased from Nov. 27 to Jan. 2 should monitor their health, and if they ate the food in the last 14 days, they should get vaccinated. People who already received their vaccination do not need to be revaccinated. They are protected," said Dr. Zbar.
Stacey Laforest is the Director of Health Protection Division with Public Health Sudbury & Districts.
"This is unfortunate but perhaps not unexpected. Public Health is working closely with store operators and workers, and any food that may have been at risk has been removed from sale. This development is an important reminder for those who are eligible to come in for immunization against hepatitis A and for all who have eaten these foods, to monitor their health for symptoms," said Laforest.
Who is at risk and who qualifies for free vaccination?
- Anyone who in the last 14 days consumed the affected food, qualifies for a free hepatitis A vaccination. A single dose is required for protection.
- IMPORTANT: Anyone who previously received the hepatitis A vaccination is protected and does not need an additional dose to protect against this exposure.
Individuals who ate the foods more than 14 days ago are advised to contact Public Health, monitor their health for signs and symptoms, and follow up with their health care provider if symptoms develop.
“Clerk-served” refers to food products that are offered for sale unpackaged and then packaged by a clerk upon request by the consumer (for example, deli meat for sale at the deli counter that is sliced and packaged by a clerk).
Any affected food that was purchased during this time period should be discarded or returned to the point of purchase. This food should not be eaten. To date, there is no evidence that anyone who consumed the food is infected.
Public Health Sudbury & Districts is hosting vaccination clinics to offer free hepatitis A vaccine to those who qualify.
Free vaccination clinics will be held at Public Health Sudbury & Districts’ main office at 1300 Paris Street in Sudbury. Drop-in (no appointment needed). Parking on site. Check phsd.ca for clinic wait times.
- Friday, January 3, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Saturday, January 4, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Sunday, January 5, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For protection against this exposure, only one dose of the hepatitis A vaccine is needed. This dose is provided for free to people who consumed the food within the last 14 days (that’s when the vaccine is effective).
Common symptoms of hepatitis A include fever, stomach pain or discomfort, dark urine, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, tiredness, loss of appetite, clay or ash-coloured bowel movements, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes).
If you are concerned that you may have been infected with hepatitis A or if you have questions about getting the vaccine, contact Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705.522.9200 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200), visit phsd.ca for updates, or speak with your primary care provider as soon as possible.