About 100 people between Friday and Saturday turned up at Bow High School for Hepatitis-A vaccines. They were offered by the state after a second employee at the Covered Bridge Restaurant in Contoocook tested positive for the disease. Rick Cricenti directs Emergency Services for the Department of Health and Human Services He says the agency reached out to more people than those who were at the restaurant when the first infected employee was working.
The state Department of Health and Human Services is investigating a case of Hepatitis A contracted by a food service worker in Contoocook.
The person who contracted Hepatitis A was identified only as a bartender who worked at the American Legion and Covered Bridge Restaurant. The timeframe for exposure was between July 20-August 3 and approximately 600-1000 people could have been exposed.
Public Health Director Jose Montero characterized this case as a ‘low-risk situation,’ because the bartender was not in direct contact with raw food.
Public health officials say six more Exeter Hospital patients have tested positive for Hepatitis C. That brings the total number of infections to 27.
Local, state and federal law enforcement are still investigating the cause of the outbreak. An Exeter Hospital employee is suspected of exposing patients to the liver-destroying virus by mishandling needles.
Hepatitis is a general term for inflammation of the liver which can be caused by bacterial or viral infections, toxins, drugs, or heavy alcohol use. Hepatitis also refers specifically to the viral infections that cause inflammation of the liver; hepatitis A, B, C, D, and E. The most common hepatitis viruses are A, B, and C. Vaccines for hepatitis A and B have been part of routine childhood vaccinations since the mid 1990s.
New Hampshire's Exeter Hospital has temporarily closed its cardiac catheterization lab after four patients contracted hepatitis C, and officials are asking 651 other people who've been treated at the lab since August to get tested for the liver-destroying virus.