Los Angeles/ Health & Lifestyle
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Published on May 18, 2024
LA Health Officials Alert Shoppers of Potential Hepatitis A Exposure at Beverly Hills Whole FoodsSource: Google Street View

An alert has been issued by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health concerning a potential hepatitis A contamination at a Whole Foods Market in Beverly Hills. In a statement picked up by CBS Los Angeles, officials have advised anyone who purchased seafood from the market between April 20th and May 13th to get a hepatitis A vaccine, following reports of an infected employee at the upscale grocery store located at 239 N. Crescent Drive.

The health scare is part of an ongoing investigation, with no new cases currently identified. The department is collaboratively working to quickly refer possibly affected Whole Foods employees for vaccination. "Public Health is working with the company to ensure employees that are not immune are referred for vaccination," according to an update from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. This precautionary measure comes in the wake of a hepatitis A outbreak amongst LA County's homeless community announced earlier in the week.

Hepatitis A is a highly contagious virus that affects the liver with symptoms varying from mild to severe. While the condition could potentially be fatal, the best course for prevention remains to be vaccination, especially after known exposure. Health officials stress that there is "no specific antiviral treatment for hepatitis A," while adding that prompt vaccination can reduce the risk of developing hepatitis A infection.

Residents who find themselves potentially exposed should not wait to take action and should immediately contact their local pharmacy or medical provider for the vaccine. Public Health officials have also indicated that "older adults and people with weakened immune systems might benefit from receiving immune globulin (IG) in addition to hepatitis A vaccination for prevention after an exposure," as relayed by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. For additional information and assistance, individuals can reach out to the Public Health line or dial 2-1-1.