A Lexington health official says most of the eating establishments in the Fayette Mall food court have re-opened. This comes after the multi-restaurant section was shut down Monday following a rash of stomach illnesses reported by people eating in the food court.
Fayette County Health Department Spokesman Kevin Hall says there have been more than 200 complaints of illnesses. “This appears to be a stomach virus and it can be spread easily from person to person or a person to contaminated items, like a table, like a chair. We’ve had reports of people said I didn’t eat anything but I sat with my family at the table and I’ve gotten sick,” noted Hall.
The health department official says there’s nothing to indicate any of the cases are hepatitis related. “The biggest reason is hepatitis A, you wouldn’t show symptoms this early. There’s a lot longer incubation period. So, it would be weeks, if not a little bit longer for you to get sick and actually start showing the symptoms of hepatitis A,” said Hall.
Hall says health officials suggested bringing in a third party to sanitize and perform intense cleaning. By mid-afternoon Tuesday there were reports that only two of the food court businesses remained closed. Hall says the public health concern initially started with one restaurant last Thursday.
The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department continues to work with mall and restaurant management on best practices to ensure the public’s safety.