Customers who ate at Popeyes on York Street in Aiken may have been exposed to hepatitis A, according to the Department of Health and Environmental Control.
DHEC was notified on June 17 that an employee in the restaurant tested positive for hepatitis A, according to a press release. Customers who ate at Popeyes, located at 954 York Street, between May 29 and June 12 may have been exposed to the virus.
The department is currently working with the restaurant to investigate any other potential exposures that may have occurred.
Customers who ate at the restaurant during this timeframe can visit the Aiken County Health Department if they are experiencing any symptoms of hepatitis A, which includes vomiting, stomach pain and yellowing of the eyes and skin. Symptoms generally occur within two to six weeks after exposure to the virus.
Those who ate at the restaurant between June 4-12 can receive a post-exposure vaccine from the Aiken County Health Department. However, customers who ate at the restaurant between May 29- June 3 are not likely to benefit from the vaccine.
An ongoing hepatitis A outbreak has been declared in South Carolina. Between Nov. 1, 2018, and June 14, 2019, there have been 147 hepatitis A cases reported to DHEC.
Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus. Most people who get hepatitis A feel sick for several weeks, but they usually recover completely and do not have lasting liver damage.
Certain individuals are at greater risk for severe hepatitis A infection, such as those with a weakened immune system, liver disease (such as hepatitis B or C) or anyone who abuses injection or non-injection drugs.
DHEC was also notified of another case of possible exposure to hepatitis A at the Harbour Town Yacht Club on Hilton Head Island on June 17.
Both Harbour Town Yacht Club and Popeyes on York Street were awarded 'A' safety ratings at their latest inspections this year.