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Hawaii health officials identify cause of Hepatitis A outbreak

By Karen Graham     Aug 16, 2016 in Food
Hawaii health officials have identified imported scallops that were served raw at Genki Sushi restaurants as being the probable source of a Hepatitis A outbreak that has sickened at least 168 people.
Customers walking up to the door of any of the 10 Genki Sushi restaurants on Oahu, or the one restaurant on Kauai, were surprised to find employees cleaning instead of preparing to serve the public. says many customers were "bummed" on finding out that Genki Sushi's scallops were said to be the source of the outbreak, but they also said they were happy that the outbreak would eventually come to an end. "I'm glad they found the cause of it, I was about to get my vaccination, so that's good," said Debra Tsutomi, a regular customer.
According to Food Safety News, in the Health Department weekly update posted on August 10, the agency said there were 168 confirmed cases of Hepatitis A in the outbreak that started in June.
The outbreak has been mainly confined to the island of Oahu, where all but eight of the victims live. Of the 168 confirmed victims, 46 were so sick they required hospitalization.
The Star-Advertiser reports that in a statement issued Monday evening, The Hawaii Health Department said: "The Department of Health has determined the Hepatitis A outbreak on Oahu is likely due to imported frozen scallops served raw at Genki Sushi Restaurants on Oahu and Kauai. The restaurants have been closed tonight to prevent any further illness and protect the public."
It is not known where the frozen scallops were obtained, other than the news that they were imported onto the islands. The Genki Sushi restaurant chain also has restaurants in California and Washington state, according to their website.
More about Hawaii, hepatitis outbreak, imported scallops, Genki Sushi restaurants, eaten raw