The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit is that anyone who visited State and Main Kitchen and Bar in Barrie between June 21st and July 11th may have been exposed to Hepatitis A and is asking them to book an appointment with them to be immunized for the virus.

This only applies to staff and customers of the local restaurant, located at 467 Cundles Road in Barrie, who were there during the specific dates. They may have been exposed to the Hepatitis A virus through a food handler working at the restaurant who has been diagnosed with the virus.

Easily transmitted from person to person, the Hepatitis A virus can be spread when people who have the virus contaminate food, drink, surfaces and objects such as cutlery and dishes. Those who didn’t eat or drink at the restaurant during this period do not need to be immunized and there is no current risk for those visiting the restaurant, which is working with the health unit.

Hepatitis A is a liver infection caused by the Hepatitis A virus. Symptoms usually develop about four weeks after exposure to the virus, although this period could range from 15 to 50 days. Symptoms include fever, loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal discomfort, a general feeling of being unwell, followed by days of jaundice.

People who are immuno-compromised, older or have a pre-existing chronic liver disease are more at risk of serious illness.

The health unit, located at 15 Sperling Drive in Barrie, is opening its clinic for immunization against Hepatitis A on an appointment basis from Monday to Friday. Call 705-721-7520 or 1-877-721-7520, ext. 5829 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Health staff will also be available to answer any questions over the phone.

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