MECKLENBURG COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - More than 2,000 people were treated as Hepatitis A vaccinations wrapped up Saturday after clinics operated every day for two weeks in Mecklenburg County.
During that time period, 2,056 people received protection after a worker at the Hardee's restaurant on the 2600 block of Little Rock Road potentially exposed thousands of customers to the liver infection on June 23.
Since being made aware of the situation June 23, no additional cases of hepatitis A have been diagnosed.
The Health Department wanted people who ate at the restaurant between June 13 and 23 to get the vaccine.
The department was originally preparing for 4,000 people, with that many doses on-hand.
Public Health is now concentrating its efforts on immunizing those in the at-risk categories to contract the illness.
To that end, Public Health launched a proactive marketing campaign to priority populations to distribute information and raise awareness.
"I think anybody that ate from there during that time period should go get that shot," shopper John Jenkins said. "Anybody that values their life should."
Some were concerned about people who ate at the Hardee's and left town.
The Hardee's is right off I-85 and near the airport.
Officials say that the restaurant has been cleaned properly from top to bottom, and employees were educated on certain topics to prevent further issues.
The Little Rock Rd. location is not planning on being closed permanently.
The Health Department says it used national media and contacted other state health departments about the health scare.
Public Health is also providing 500 doses of vaccine for inmates at the Mecklenburg County Jail.
County-purchased vaccine is also being provided to the following partners for their priority populations, as well as distribute education and awareness materials:
- Ballantyne Family Medicine
- The Powerhouse Project
- Charlotte Rescue Mission
Bojangles Charlotte area headquarters also contacted the Public Health to have their food service employees vaccinated against hepatitis A.
Bojangles will pay for their employees to be vaccinated.
In addition, several community partners are now supplied with state-supplied vaccine to immunize their patients and further contain the outbreak. They include:
- CW Williams
- Charlotte Community Health Clinic
- Eastowne Family Medicine
Commissioner Vilma Leake, who represents the area where the Hardee's is located, says the county has done all it can. Now, she says, it's up to the people.
"We cannot police this whole county of one million people," Leake said. "We have made it available across town, in town, and around town. Times have been convenient for people who work or don't work, so what else do we need to do."
In six months people will have to get another shot to be 100 percent protected from Hepatitis A.
The Health Department says that shot will be free as well.