Hollywood's Hepatitis Scare: Party Caterer Infected
An employee of Wolfgang Puck Catering diagnosed with the hepatitis A virus may have exposed guests at
several events, including Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue party, health officials said.
The risk of illness was “quite low,” but anyone who ate raw food at the magazine’s Feb. 14 party was urged to receive a preventive shot by Wednesday, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health said Tuesday.
The virus is found in the feces of infected people and can be spread through contaminated food and water. It attacks the liver and can cause fever, diarrhea and jaundice. It is rarely fatal.
The affected employee was placed on medical leave, said Carl Schuster, president of Wolfgang Puck Catering.
“We immediately worked to take every precaution to further safeguard our patrons and other employees,” Schuster said in a statement.
Sports Illustrated said in a statement that it was taking the situation very seriously and was working directly with county health authorities.
“We are alerting our guests and staff as quickly as possible to ensure they receive the relevant health warnings,” the statement said.
Puck’s restaurants and prepackaged foods were not affected, nor were any parties after Feb. 20, including Sunday’s post-Oscars Governors Ball.
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