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FOR RELEASE: May 4, 2001
CONTACT: Dick Gunn
405/271-5601

Hepatitis A in Muldrow Food Handler

The Oklahoma State Department of Health, working with Sequoyah County Health Department officials, has confirmed that a food handler at the Sunrise restaurant located at I-40 and Highway 64B in Muldrow Oklahoma, has Hepatitis A.  Persons who ate salads , sandwiches or hamburgers containing fresh vegetables (lettuce, tomatoes, onions, or pickles) or foods topped with grated cheese, at the following times, may have been exposed to infectious Hepatitis A.

Saturday, April 21 10pm – 6am    
Tuesday, April 24 2pm –10 pm
Thursday, April 26 2pm-10pm    
Friday, April 27 2pm-10pm
Saturday, April 28 2pm-10pm
Tuesday, May 1 2pm-10pm

Health officials recommend an immune globulin (IG) shot for persons who consumed these items during these dates and times.  Restaurant patrons who did not eat the sandwiches with vegetables, salads, or cheese during this period are not at risk for transmission of Hepatitis A from this food handler. Persons who believe they are at risk can obtain an IG shot from their private physician or their local county health department.  The Sequoyah County Health Department,  will conduct a special immunization clinic on Saturday May 5, 2001 from 10 am to 1 pm at 100 S. Main (City Hall) in  Muldrow, OK.

The Sequoyah CHD will also give immune globulin (IG) for persons who believe they are at risk next week at their regular location, located at 612 N. Oak in Sallisaw , OK:

Monday, May 7 8 am - 5 pm
Tuesday, May 8 8 am - 5 pm
Wednesday, May 9 8 am - 5 pm
Thursday, May 10 8 am - 5 pm
Friday, May 11 8 am - 5 pm

Immune globulin should be given after the exposure and can be 80 to 90 percent effective in preventing hepatitis A.  The shots are not recommended after two weeks following exposure.  For example, persons who dined at the restaurant on April 21, 2001 must receive their IG immunization on Saturday May 5, 2001. The best method to prevent the transmission of hepatitis A is through the practice of good personal hygiene, which includes thorough handwashing following use of the restroom or changing diapers.

Symptoms of hepatitis A include: fever, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and generalized weakness.  These symptoms may be followed in a few days by dark brown urine and yellow eyes and skin.  If these symptoms occur, persons should contact their private physician. For any questions regarding immunization dates or risk for exposure may contact the Sequoyah County Health Department at 918-775-6201.

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