Oct. 21--The prepared foods section at Whole Foods' Detroit store on Mack Avenue is linked to two recent cases of Hepatitis A, the Detroit health department announced today.
The department is asking anyone who ate prepared foods at the store from Oct. 6-12 to speak to a doctor and seek preventative treatment.
"While it remains unclear exactly how either of these individuals contracted Hepatitis A, and we know that Whole Foods Market Detroit has a comprehensive food safety protocol, we want to do our best to protect our residents and those of surrounding communities who may have been exposed," said Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, executive director of the Detroit health department.
Hepatitis A, a contagious liver disease, can be spread when ingesting food or drink infected with the Hepatitis A virus. Symptoms include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, yellow eyes and skin and dark urine, according to the city's health department.
A Whole Foods spokeswoman Allison Phelps issued the following statement:
"After a team member in our Whole Foods Market store in Detroit was diagnosed with Hepatitis A, out of an abundance of caution, we immediately contacted the Detroit Health Department and began reviewing food logs and safety procedures. While there is no definitive link that the second case is related to the occurrence in our store, we are cooperating fully with the Detroit Health Department to ensure the safety of our customers and team members."
One of the two Detroit cases was a store employee who handles prepared foods. The other case was a Detroit resident who ate from the prepared foods section. The city's health department said it is unclear exactly how the disease was contracted in each case.
The health department continues to investigate both cases.
The city's two clinics are offering Hepatitis A evaluations until next Wednesday during business hours, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The clinics are known as the Samaritan Center, 5555 Conner Street, and the Family Place, 8726 Woodward Avenue.
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