MONDAY, JUNE 18, 2018

More than 2,000 vaccinated against hepatitis A in N.C.

County health officials have vaccinated approximately 2,000 people who  might have been exposed to hepatitis A while dining at an Olive Garden in Fayetteville, N.C.

Officials at the clinic vaccinated approximately 800 people Tuesday and an estimated 1,300 more on Wednesday to prevent the disease in those who dined or worked at the eatery on days when an employee who tested positive was working, The Fayetteville Observer reports.

"We probably did almost twice as many (Wednesday) as we did (Tuesday)," Buck Wilson, the health department director, said, according to The Fayetteville Observer. "We are noticing that we're more efficient in our delivery. We're fine-tuning our process."

Mike Bernstein, an Olive Garden spokesman, said that the only person to have gotten sick is the employee who tested positive in the first place.

"They set up the clinic out of an abundance of caution," Bernstein said, according to The Fayetteville Observer. "I think there's a feeling out there that if you went to the restaurant, you were automatically exposed and are going to get sick, and that's just not the case. There is no outbreak here. As far as we know, there's only one person that has the illness."

Wilson said that if people are practicing good hygiene, the threat of the disease spreading is reduced.

"The truth of the matter is, we are being very, very preventive," Wilson said, according to The Fayetteville Observer. "We have the opportunity to try to prevent folks from getting it, so we're doing what we can."

Wilson said that while the situation shouldn't cause a panic, people who were at the restaurant should still take it seriously enough to get vaccinated. He said the disease could potentially be dangerous for older people or infants with weak immune systems.