It’s now being reported that as many as 2,000 people in Salt Lake County area of Utah may be at risk of contracting hepatitis A after visiting a local 7-Eleven store where an employee who was diagnosed with the virus came to work during their infectious period and took it upon themselves to handle the food.
Utah isn’t the only state facing this issue. Salt Lake County’s ongoing outbreak which began in November of 2017 is part of a multi-state resurgence of the disease over the course of the last year. The outbreak has now affecting primarily California, Kentucky and Michigan, and now Utah.
Hepatitis A is a virus that causes acute liver inflammation and is typically spread through sexual contact, needle sharing, or by consuming food that has been contaminated by infected feces. The infection manifests with symptoms of abdominal pain, fever, diarrhea, and vomiting, but if it goes untreated, prolonged liver inflammation can result in death.
Salt Lake County health authorities are asking for people who may have come in contact with this contaminated food to please go get vaccinated at your nearest medical facility and The Salt Lake County Health Department is offering free vaccinations to those without insurance.