Last week it was a Wegman's supermarket in New York
. Last year it was Beyonce at a Wolfgang Puck catered Sports Illustrated party
. This time, it's Ashton Kutcher's 30th birthday party
on Feb. 7 where A-list celebrities such as Demi Moore,
Madonna, Ivanka Trump, Salma Hayek, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Hudson, Bruce Willis, Lucy Liu, Roberto Cavalli and Liv Tyler, who all attended, are now being asked to get immunoglobin shots to ward off hepatitis A
Apparently a bartender at Socialista,
some fancy club where the birthday bash was held, was discovered to be carrying hepatitis A earlier this week, and when city health department officials inspected the bar they discovered that it lacked hand-washing soap.
One story gave a new twist to the oral-fecal route description we usually use: According to the health department, hepatitis A is a relatively rare disease spread by putting something in one's mouth that has been contaminated with traces of fecal matter.
Don't eat poop
The day manager who answered the phone at Socialista this afternoon told the Health Blog that the bartender apparently got hepatitis on a recent vacation to Honduras, and just found out he had the bug.
These hepatitis A cases are a weekly occurrence in the U.S. A food worker (bartender) parties in Mexico or the Dominican or in this case, Honduras, where hepatitis A is endemic. Food worker (bartender) comes home, is fine for two weeks, then spends the next two weeks crapping out virus. And unless food worker (bartender) is really diligent about handwashing, he's spreading virus-containing poop on food -- especially fresh produce or salads. And it's really hard to effectively wash hands without soap. After four weeks, food worker turns yellow and goes to the doctor where a diagnosis is made. Then the clinics start.
Get vaccinated for hepatitis A. And dude, wash your damn hands