CARIBOU, Maine — Cary Medical Center and Pines Health Services administered nearly 800 hepatitis A vaccines over the course of just three days, according to a press release issued on Wednesday night.
The high volume of vaccinations resulted from a CDC announcement last Friday indicating that an employee of the Caribou restaurant Burger Boy was carrying the hepatitis A virus.
Wednesday, May 22, was the last day of Cary Medical Center offering scheduled vaccination clinics, however Pines Health Services will continue to offer vaccinations 8 a.m.-3 p.m. at all their locations. They will offer vaccinations at the same time tomorrow in all locations except Washburn and on Saturday vaccines will be offered 9 a.m.-noon at the Caribou Health Center.
Those unable to attend at these times are encouraged to visit Cary Medical Center emergency room in Caribou.
Burger Boy owner Spenser Ouellette explained earlier this week that he “had no way of knowing” that the employee was carrying the virus, and that he left the restaurant to seek medical treatment as soon as he noticed symptoms. Additionally, Ouellette said that no employees have since experienced symptoms of the virus.
Medical officials advise that a vaccine will not be effective for any individuals who have eaten at Burger Boy between April 24 and May 7, adding that the risk of actually contracting the virus is low. Those who did not receive a vaccination are urged to read the CDC website’s article on hepatitis symptoms and contact their physician or medical care provider if they have any concerns.
Anyone who ate at the restaurant on May 8 would need to receive a vaccination today at the latest, and those who ate at Burger Boy on May 13 would need their vaccination by May 27.
No vaccinations are needed for anyone who ate at the restaurant after May 13, as the exposure risk was no longer present. Officials at Cary Medical Center also confirmed that there is “no ongoing risk related to hepatitis A at the restaurant,” adding that residents can comfortably go back to enjoying ice cream and food at the city’s iconic restaurant.