The Ministry of Health & Long-Term Care defines Hepatitis A as a virus that can cause a liver infection. Symptoms can last a few days to several months, but it is rarely fatal and most people develop lifetime immunity following infection.
Hepatitis A can be serious for older people and those with chronic liver disease. For these individuals, there is a greater risk of hospitalization and death. According to Health Canada, typical symptoms of acute hepatitis include fever, loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal pain, and jaundice (yellowish colour on the skin and eyeballs).
Hepatitis A is transmitted by eating or drinking something that is contaminated. Raw or undercooked food, food handled by people who have not washed their hands, or water contaminated by animal or human waste are often sources of the virus. More information
Food recall due to possible hepatitis A contamination
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) issued a food recall warning on April 15, 2016, announcing the recall of Nature's Touch brand Organic Berry Cherry Blend. The product was sold exclusively at Costco warehouse locations in Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador. Read the recall
On April 20, Ontario Medical Officer of Health Dr. David Williams advised members of the public who consumed the product in the last 14 days to get a hepatitis A vaccination as soon as possible, if they have not been previously fully vaccinated against hepatitis A. Read the statement
The April 20 statement from the Medical Officer of Health indicates that 10 cases of hepatitis A so far have been linked to this food recall in Ontario. Oxford County has one reported case.
If you are an Oxford County resident who consumed Nature's Touch brand Organic Berry Cherry Blend from Costco, please call Public Health for more information:
519-539-9800, ext. 3500, or toll-free 1-800-755-0394, ext. 3500