September 2, 2006

CITY HEIGHTS – The county health department has shut down a fast-food Mexican restaurant after 10 customers came down with a bacterial infection.

Filiberto’s restaurant at 3446 University Ave. was closed Thursday and will remain closed until the health problems are addressed, the county Health and Human Services Agency said.

The agency said 10 customers who ate at Filiberto’s Aug. 24-28 came down with what appears to be the food-borne bacteria shigella, which causes fever, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain. It is infectious.

Three of the 10 were hospitalized with serious symptoms, county public health officer Dr. Nancy Bowen said.

She said anyone with those symptoms who ate at the restaurant in that time period should go to a doctor. The symptoms typically begin within two days of exposure and last five to seven days.

“It is very important that anyone who may have been exposed and works in food handling, child care or health care stay home from work until they have been seen by their physician, so they do not spread the illness,” Bowen said.

–Pauline Repard