The Hamilton County Health Department in conjunction with the Indiana State Dept. of Health has been investigating frozen strawberries that have been recalled due to potential contamination with hepatitis A virus and are linked to a multi-state outbreak investigation.
Of approximately 1,400 retail food establishments in Hamilton County, 17 facilities received the recalled product and were surveyed regarding their use of the recalled items. Of those, two facilities required additional follow-up by epidemiological staff. During the follow-up investigation it has been determined that no facilities are using the recalled product, and it has been determined that there is a low risk for HAV communication in Hamilton County retail food establishments.
At the present time there are no suspected cases of HAV identified in Hamilton County.
People who consumed products containing frozen strawberries from a Hamilton County food establishment and are concerned about a possible exposure to Hepatitis A are encouraged to contact their Primary Care Provider. People who consumed the product between Nov. 2 to 18 may be eligible to receive prophylactic treatment. People who consumed the product before Nov. 2 are beyond the two-week prophylaxis window for Hepatitis A and should watch for signs and symptoms of Hepatitis A.
Hepatitis A is caused by a virus that inflames the liver. Hand washing is the best way to prevent the spread of Hepatitis. Thorough hand washing after using the bathroom and before eating or preparing food can help lower the risk of getting the virus.
Signs and symptoms of Hepatitis A include:
•Loss of appetite
•Fever Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and/or eyes)
If a person or family member displays any of the symptoms above they are highly encouraged to see their primary care provider.
The Hamilton County Health Dept. will have staff members available to assist consumers in Hamilton County with any concerns they may have regarding the strawberry recall. Concerned consumers may call 317-776-8500 Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Source: Hamilton County