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Published On: Thu, Dec 26th, 2013

San Francisco: Public health notice issued due to hepatitis A infected Comstock Saloon employee

The San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH) issued a public health warning Tuesday after a food handler at a North Beach establishment was diagnosed with the viral infection, hepatitis A.

Health officials say the employee at the Comstock Saloon (155 Columbus Avenue) in North Beach in San Francisco has been diagnosed with Hepatitis A infection. Restaurant patrons who ate or drank at the restaurant on December 12, 13, 14, 15, or 19, 2013, may have been exposed.

Hepatitis A Image/CDC

Hepatitis A
Image/CDC

They note that patrons who ate or drank at the restaurant after December 19 are not at risk.

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“The worker is currently restricted from work until he or she is no longer contagious. The risk of a restaurant patron having been infected is extremely low, but we need the medical community and restaurant patrons to be aware of the possibility of contracting this disease,” said Dr. Tomás Aragón, MD, Health Officer for the City & County of San Francisco. There have been no cases of Hepatitis A linked to this food handler.

The SFDPH is advising customers who ate or drank at the Comstock Saloon on the above dates who are not immune to Hepatitis A to consult their medical provider. The Hepatitis A vaccine may be able to protect individuals vaccinated within 14 days of the date of potential exposure.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease that results from infection with the Hepatitis A virus. It can range in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months.

Hepatitis A is usually spread when a person ingests fecal matter,even in microscopic amounts, from contact with objects, food, or drinks contaminated by feces or stool from an infected person.

Not everyone has symptoms. If symptoms develop, they usually appear 2 to 6 weeks after becoming infected and can include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine and jaundice.

There is no specific treatment once symptoms appear, but a vaccination can help lessen the effects of the disease if given within 14 days of exposure.

The best way to control the spread of hepatitis A and many other illnesses is through proper hand washing, especially after using the restroom, changing diapers, and before eating or preparing food. Hand washing should include 20 seconds of vigorous soaping of all parts of the hands, especially between fingers and under fingernails.

For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page and the Outbreak News This Week Radio Show page.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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  1. Mayor Bloomberg put saving lives first as he embarked on public health crusades | Nutrition Facts says:

    […] San Francisco: Public health notice issued due to hepatitis A infected … The San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH) issued a public health warning Tuesday after a food handler at a North Beach establishment was diagnosed with the viral infection, hepatitis A. Health officials say the employee at the Comstock … Read more on The Global Dispatch […]

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