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No public health threat determined after Roanoke hepatitis case

(WTOK)
Published: May. 16, 2022 at 11:16 AM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - There is no health threat to the public based on a case of hepatitis A diagnosed in Roanoke last week, according to the Roanoke City and Alleghany Health Districts.

The person diagnosed works at Luigi’s Gourmet Italian Restaurant on Brambleton Avenue, but according to health officials, has not handled food there. The restaurant remains open for business.

Health Director Cynthia Morrow released the following statement:

“On Friday afternoon, the Roanoke City and Alleghany Health Districts were notified of a new case of hepatitis A in someone who worked in a food establishment. Our environmental health team was immediately dispatched to the facility where they conducted a comprehensive inspection and interviewed key personnel. We were quickly able to establish that the worker did not handle any food at any time and were thus able to conclude that there was no public health threat.

“As part of every investigation of hepatitis A, we inquire about job status. With the ongoing hepatitis A outbreak that we have in our community, it is not surprising that we have identified, and will continue to identify individuals who have hepatitis A who work in food establishments. The owner of the establishment, who is fully cooperating with our investigation, is exceptionally motivated in ensuring that all policies are in place to protect the health of those they serve.”

WDBJ has reached out for a statement from the restaurant, but has not heard back yet. The restaurant is closed Mondays.

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