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Health Dept. Runs for Cover On Puck Scare

2/28/2007 2:23 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Wolfgang PuckThe Wolfgang Puck hepatitis scare has caused both Puck and the L.A. County Department of Public Health to circle the wagons. An official from County Health has just refused to give TMZ a list of catered Puck parties where guests may have been exposed to Hepatitis A.

Dr. David Dassey, the Deputy Chief of Acute Communicable Disease Control for County Health tells TMZ that of the 14 parties that the infected employee catered, the ship has sailed on 10 of them because they are outside the 14-day limit for getting a preventative shot.

The 14-day limit for the Sports Illustrated party is today. That leaves three other parties. Dassey refused to give TMZ that list, though he did not cite any legal grounds. When pressed, Dassey said his Department contacted the hosts of the three parties yesterday, and told the hosts to get in touch with the guests. Dassey says his Department offered to help the hosts get in touch but does not know if the hosts have taken up the Department's offer.

Dr. Dassey does not know if the hosts have gotten in touch with the guests, with guest lists that ranged between 26 to 45 people at each of the three parties. The 14-day deadline for one of the parties is tomorrow, but Dr. Dassey doesn't know if the guests have been contacted yet.

Dassey acknowledged that the hosts have no legal responsibility to contact the guests, whom he said "would be at risk" if no one tells them what happened. Dassey was steadfast -- he would not allow TMZ to publish specific information about any of the parties, even if the guests have not been contacted.

23 COMMENTS

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1.

uniformsformilitarypersonnelonly    

THERE GOES PUCK'S REPUTATION DOWN THE SHITHOLE..........

2759 days ago
2.

Anonymous    

I feel sick...

2759 days ago
3.

Pat    

This is why I would never want to be the owner of a restaurant. Too many diseases out there these days. The worker should have been more resposible. This has to be Pucks worst nightmare

2759 days ago
4.

jamis    

They don't need to give lists to the media, but it seems odd that they're not following-up to verify party guests are notified. They seem to say if party hosts don't care, or are too disorganized to notify people of the threat, so be it. Maybe, the CDC needs to pounce on their head.

2759 days ago
5.

uniformsformilitarypersonnelonly    

PUCK'S CAREER IS KAPUT!!! TIME TO HEAD BACK TO GERMANY TO COOK FOR THE POST-NAZI ANNIVERSARY DINNERS.

2759 days ago
6.

Perk    

If the county health department doesn't demand that the host contact the guests, what's the point of having a county health department? I see a ugly lawsuit brewing for Puck & LA County.
The only bright side is that most (not all) but most affluant people would probably brag about the fact that Puck was catering the party & the mainstream media picks up on this story & the guests here about that way. But not quicking notifing people is lawsuit material.

2759 days ago
7.

serena    

Hmmmm....
Isn't that this the same chance and disease that common folk take & get sick from by dining out anywhere? WOW! What's her name can get press even from tainted food like the rest of the population!

2759 days ago
8.

uniformsformilitarypersonnelonly    

HITLER IS SMILING AT PUCK FROM HELL RIGHT NOW.

2759 days ago
9.

Gayle Dean    

What is it with Wolfgang Puck and diseased LIVER? He thumbs his nose at people who protest his foie gras made from the diseased livers of tortured geese and then he feeds his guests food that may cause disease in their livers. Very unappetizing to hear a chef involved in such things! He should be called Wolfgang Yuck!

2759 days ago
10.

Marky Mark    

HEY...I HOPE ALL THESE CELEBRITIES GET HEPATITIS AND ALL DROP DEAD.....

2759 days ago
11.

mk    

He's Austrian . . .

2759 days ago
12.

BruceLD    

Hmm...I have to repeat my comment:

Health authorities take alot of care not to cause a public panic by limiting information to only those that may have been exposed to it. The risk of HEP infection is very rare as long as proper hand cleaning and food preparation is followed. The majority of professional food handlers are aware or proper handling and cleaning to avoid contamination for not just HEP, but also many other communicable diseases. I would imagine the health department is properly skilled and trained to handle such events, and they are taking only precautionary measures including preventing a public panic. The risks of such infection are minimal, but of course this gives fodder to ignorant people to immediately place blame on minorities, and to further spread their ignorance and cause undue concern.

Communicable diseases are everywhere in your everyday living environment, pets, children, at work, and so on. We've lived with them this long, and we will continue to survive. Don't panic, and don't spread misinformation. The psychological damage can be just as dangerous.

2759 days ago
13.

studly    

well if you live in l.a. hate to say this but most at least 90% of these people working at catering events and the restaurants in los angeles are more then likely illegal mexicans right off the border so why is anyone in los angeles surprised by this , i'm not sure ,what i'm surprised about is how many times it happens and is probably NOT REPORTED that one of their illegal alien employees has hepatitis or who knows what ,only reason this one was reported was because of the celebrity status of the people who attended these functions is my hunch

2759 days ago
14.

Frank Joel Schroeder    

What is being left out here is that many of the workers and servers at these functions are below minimum wage illegals. They obtain no health screenings and, because of their illegal status, circumvent health certifications. Until this situation is rectified, you will not hear the last of such stories.

2759 days ago
15.

poor britney    

what happened to the George Lucas/john landis story why is it no longer posted DOES ANYONE KNOW ???

2759 days ago
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