Long Beach, California – The Long Beach Health Department is informing people that there is a possibility people who had a meal from Meals on Wheels between late May and June might have been exposed to hepatitis A.
Hepatitis A is a highly contagious virus that causes liver inflammation and damage.
Meals on Wheels is a nonprofit corporation that serves around 400 Long Beach residents who are elderly or disabled and can’t go shopping on their own by delivering food on a weekly basis.
Warning letters about the possible exposure were handed out by the health officials to anyone who had consumed meals provided by Meals on Wheels on May 23, May 31, June 6, and June 13. The warning letters issued by the Long Beach Health Department comprised advice on getting a shot for hepatitis A and monitoring for symptoms of the virus in the following period, such as diarrhea, dark-colored urine, jaundice, vomiting, muscle pain, stomach pain, fever, nausea, and loss of appetite.
Health authorities said that despite the chances of getting hepatitis A infection being low, they must issue a warning to the public since it is a standard public health procedure. Health officials also said that the nonprofit corporation cooperated fully with them during this incident and that eating meals from Meals on Wheels is no longer risky.
Additional details regarding this situation were not released, but it was only said it was caused by a volunteer who was assisting with the packaging of food.
There is currently no therapy available for the virus, since it usually goes away on its own.
The virus may be passed on by direct contact with an infected person or through the consumption of food or water that has been contaminated with the feces of a person who is infected with the virus.