Food handler tests positive for Hepatitis A

BOSTON - Two clinics to treat hepatitis A will be held this week for patrons of a Boston sub shop where a food handler tested positive for the highly contagious virus.

The worker at Quiznos Sub Shop in the city’s Downtown Crossing shopping area tested positive over the weekend, city officials said in a statement.

The Boston Public Health Commission recommended that anyone who ate food from the shop June 17 through June 19 receive an injection before July 1. It is estimated that less than 600 people ate food from the sub shop on those dates.

The commission said it would hold clinics Tuesday and Wednesday at St. Anthony’s Shrine on Arch Street to administer shots of immune globulin.

Hepatitis A can be transmitted through food preparation. The disease can damage the liver, causing jaundice, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal discomfort and dark urine.

Hepatitis A virus is spread as a result of fecal contamination - fecal-oral route - and can be spread person to person or through food handling, particularly cold or uncooked foods including salads and salad items, rolls, breads, buns, fruit or vegetable garnishes, and sandwich condiments such as pickles and onions, chips, and ice or beverages containing ice, according to the state Department of Public Health.