This story is interesting because it is not the typical scenario of an infected food handler in a restaurant, but similar risks apply and similar precautions are being taken to protect the public. An employee at a Teavana store at the Fashion Mall in Indianapolis was recently diagnosed with hepatitis A, which was confirmed by the local health department on Tuesday.
The Marion County Public Health Department is urging people who drank tea samples at the store on April 5th or 12th to watch for signs such as nausea, vomiting, and yellowing of the skin and eyes, which are common symptoms of hepatitis A. The health department is also administering free vaccines or (immunoglobulin for adults over 40) for those who drank tea from the store on April 19th as an extra precaution, since the vaccine could still be effective at preventing the symptoms for these individuals. This is because the virus requires an incubation period in our bodies, and if a vaccine is administered early enough, the person can create antibodies that are ready to target the virus when it comes out of hiding from inside our cells.