Another Hepatatis A case investigation is underway, according to Detroit Health Department, which is investigating a a case in connection with an employee that works in a confined area at Greektown Casino in Detroit located at 555 East Lafayette.
As of today, only one employee is known to have Hepatitis A. The Detroit Health Department believes the risk of exposure is only in those that were in the private Platinum member card access area of the casino between November 11th and November 22nd.
Generally, the risk of transmission of Hepatitis A from an employee is low. Hepatitis A can potentially be prevented if given a vaccination within two weeks of having come in contact with the virus. Given the low, but potential risk, the Detroit Health Department is recommending vaccination for people who may have eaten in the private Platinum member card access area during the exposure period.
Those who consumed food and beverages at Greektown Casino (in the private Platinum member card access area) in Detroit from November 11 through November 22 (exposure period) should receive the Hepatitis A vaccine as early as possible, and before December 6, 2017. The Greektown casino is proactively contacting those individuals to advise them of their vaccination options.
Greektown Casino has been fully cooperative with the investigation, and hired a certified cleaning contractor which has thoroughly cleaned and sanitized all potentially affected areas. The casino is also working with the Detroit Health Department to notify and arrange vaccination for potentially affected people who may have eaten in the private Platinum member card access area, as well as all employees. The Detroit Health Department has notified the gaming establishment that the affected employee cannot return to work until cleared by their doctor.
Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease that results from infection with the Hepatitis A virus. It can range in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months. Symptoms can include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal, and sometimes yellow eyes or skin and dark urine. A person can get Hepatitis A when they eat, drink, or touch their mouth with food, liquid or objects (including their hands) that have come into contact with stool from an infected person. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should seek medical attention immediately.
Southeast Michigan has seen an increase in Hepatitis A cases since 2016. High risk individuals identified in association with this outbreak include persons who: share injection and non-injection street drugs (including pain killers), have sexual activities with someone who has Hepatitis A, have close contact, care for, or live with someone who has Hepatitis A, are homeless or have transient living situations, or are men who have sex with men.
“We are diligently working with our state partners, physicians, hospitals, food establishments, and community groups to educate the community, limit any potential exposures, and vaccinate those who are at risk,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Director and Health Officer of the Detroit Health Department.
The Detroit Health Department will offer free Hepatitis A vaccines for uninsured Detroit residentswho may have consumed food or beverage in the Platinum member card access area during the exposure period at both of its Immunization Clinics Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 8am to 5pm and Wednesday 9am to 6pm.
The clinics are located at:
- The Samaritan Center (5555 Conner Street Detroit, MI 48213) 313-410-8142
- The Family Place (8726 Woodward Avenue Detroit, MI 48202) 313-410-7803
The Detroit Health Department recommends that non-Detroit residents contact their local Health Department if they are uninsured and consumed food and beverages in the private Platinum members card access only area during the exposure period. Information for those local health departments:
The best way to prevent Hepatitis A is through vaccination. Other means of preventing the spread of infection is to thoroughly wash hands with soap and water: after using the bathroom, after diaper changes, and before handling food.
For questions, contact the Detroit Health Department at 313-876-4000.