Hepatitis A
Foodborne illnesses

Food Safety


Hepatitis A virus is a communicable disease that may be foodborne, but is also transmitted through person-to- person contact in settings such as daycare centers and hospitals by persons who do not adequately wash their hands after rest room use, and by consumption of raw or undercooked shellfish harvested from contaminated waters. In the foodservice industry, the primary controls for Hepatitis A are proper training and effective supervision of employees to ensure good hygienic practices, proper handwashing and safe handling of food and tableware.


Abrupt fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal discomfort, jaundice, dark urine and joint aches. Symptoms of this infection usually occur within 15-50 days following exposure. The greatest risk of illness transmission from an infected person is one week before until one week after symptoms first appear. Source Humans; occasionally nonhuman primates.

Control Mode of Transmission

Person-to-person via fecal-oral. Common source outbreaks have been related to contaminated water; food contaminated by infected foodhandlers, especially food that is not cooked after handling; and raw or undercooked shellfish from contaminated waters.


  • Food-protection education
  • Minimize manual contact with food and food contact surfaces

  • Good personal hygiene and handwashing

  • Approved food sources

  • Proper food cooking temperatures

  • Vaccines for active immunization; limited use (available as of 1995)

  • Exclude infected employees


FDA’s Bad Bug Book
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


National Restaurant Association