Confirmed case of hepatitis A in Taber prompts AHS warning

By CHAT News Today
July 14, 2017 - 3:04pm Updated: July 14, 2017 - 3:40pm

TABER, AB — Alberta Health Services are warning people in Taber who attended a banquet that they may have been exposed to hepatitis A.

In a news release sent on Friday, AHS confirmed the virus in a worker who served food and drinks at the St. Mary School graduation banquet at the Taber Community Centre on June 30. AHS is inspecting the banquet space to ensure there is no further risk to the public.

In a statement, Dr. Lena Derie-Gillespie, the medical officer of health for the South Zone, says AHS believes the risk to the public is low, but advises anybody who consumed food or drink at the community hall to monitor themselves and their family for symptoms until August 20.

Hepatitis A is an infection of the liver caused by a virus, and is usually spread through direct contact with an infected person. However, the illness can also be spread indirectly by ingesting contaminated food and water. If the person with hepatitis A does not properly wash their hands after using the washroom, the virus can be transmitted through food and beverages prepared by the infected individual.

Symptoms of hepatitis A include tiredness, poor appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, fever, followed by dark-coloured urine, light-coloured stool and yellowing of eyes and skin several days later.

Some people, especially young children, may get hepatitis A infection without noticing any symptoms, but they are still infectious to others.

Anyone who develop such symptoms between June 30 and August 20 are asked to immediately call Health Link at 811.

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