Hepatitis A Outbreak affects Silver State
The Nevada State Health Division and local health authorities, in collaboration with several other states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Food and Drug Administration, are investigating a multi-state outbreak of hepatitis A associated with frozen Townsend Farms Organic Antioxidant Blend of berries sold at Costco. However, investigations are ongoing to determine if this product was sold at other stores or venues.
As of Friday, 30 people ill with acute hepatitis A that may be linked with consumption of a contaminated product have been reported by five states: Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Arizona, and California. Cases have been identified in Washoe and Clark Counties. These numbers are expected to change as the investigation continues. Costco is notifying its members who purchased this product since late February 2013, and has removed this product from its shelves.
Consumers are recommended to discard the product. Persons who have consumed this product in the last 14 days should consider contacting a health care provider to determine if vaccination against hepatitis A is indicated and available. People who have had physician-diagnosed hepatitis A or have received two doses of hepatitis A vaccine in the past do not need to receive more vaccine. Those who do not have a primary care physician should call their local health department (see below).
Hepatitis A is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus. People usually get the disease from consuming a contaminated food item. Early signs of hepatitis A appear two to six weeks after exposure. Symptoms commonly include mild fever, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, pain in the upper right side of the abdomen, dark urine and jaundice (yellow eyes or skin). Most people recover in a week or so, but sometimes hepatitis A can lead to hospitalization and severe illness. It is very important that if you have symptoms like this you do not go to work, especially if you work in food service, health care or child care.
The CDC update on the outbreak is located at this website: http://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/Outbreaks/2013/A1b-03-31/index.html
Local Health Authorities
Carson City Health and Human Services Washoe County Health District
900 East Long Street 1001 East 9th Street, Building B
Carson City, NV 89701 Reno, NV 89520
Southern Nevada Health District For rural Nevadans:
330 South Valley View Boulevard Nevada State Health Division
Las Vegas, NV 89107 Carson City, NV 89706