Officials with the Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) have confirmed a new case of hepatitis A infection in a food service employee on Hawaii Island, bringing the total there to 93 cases since June, according to a prepared statement.
The employee has a history of exposure on Oahu and worked for three weeks in July at the fast food and catering restaurant, Sushi Shiono Waikoloa, located in the Waikoloa Beach Resort, health officials noted.
Health department officials are alerting people who consumed any food products from this store that they may have been exposed to the disease, and are urging people who have not been vaccinated to inquire about receiving hepatitis A vaccine or immune globulin.
Since the outbreak began in mid-June, there have been 93 confirmed cases of hepatitis A, 29 of which have required hospitalization. All cases have been in adults who were on Oahu during their exposure periods. DOH continues to investigate and is working to identify the source of infection for this outbreak.
“Preventing exposure from infected food handlers is difficult because patients with hepatitis A are most contagious one to two weeks before symptoms start,” State Epidemiologist Sarah Park said in the statement. “It is possible that other food service establishments will be affected with additional new cases.”
1. Hawaii Department of Health. Hepatitis A Infection in Food Service Employee. Press release. 2016.