Monday, July 20, 2009

McDonald's giving its customers "Hepatitis A", for real

I just finished watching an ad for "sodas and juice drinks", the ad was against any taxes on these SUGAR DRINKS. The ad's main message was that taxing these items will do nothing for health care reform, but the thing is why are they on television already with this statement? I can go on and on about these items and how it contributes to obesity in children. We know this, just pop open a Mountain Dew and it is like pouring sugar in your mouth.

Part of health care reform is PEOPLE REFORM.

People reform is the responsibility of adults to pick and choose the right things to eat, drink for yourselves and your children. McDonald's and sodas, juice drinks are not picking the right things for your health. Eventually, eating and drinking this junk does catch up to you. Being fat or obese is only part of the puzzle, along with this comes high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart attack, etc. Being fat and obese triggers all the above. This is why PEOPLE REFORM is the second part of health care reform. If people in this country don't change their behavior and poor habits, we will continue to pay for diseases that should not be a factor, but became a factor because of the poor choice by the individual.

McDonald's is a delight. When I was growing up, Mickey D's was a treat not an everyday norm, as it is NOW for million of Americans. So, is anyone surprised that Hepatitis A is floating around any McDonald's? I am not.

Food safety lawyer and blogger Bill Marler has been reporting about hepatitis A at McDonald's on his blog. 20 cases are linked to a Milan, IL McDonald's (including 11 hospitalizations). In fact, this isn't the first time McDonald's has given its customers McHepatitis A. I suppose that's part of the value meals? Marler says (of McDonald's): "How Many Times Does Lightening Need to Strike Before You Wake the Hell Up?" and points out they could vaccinate all employees for about $50 apiece.

A worker at the McDonald's in question was diagnosed with Hep A on June 9 (and would have been contagious long before that) but the disease was not reported to the health department until July 10. This was the first of two workers at the McDonald's who tested positive for the disease.

The timing of the diagnosis and reporting is critical because the spread of the disease can be halted most effectively if those who were exposed get vaccinations within 14 days after they were exposed. In other words, the month lag time in reporting this case was not a good thing. The Rock Island County Health Department is offering vaccinations to people who ate at the McDonald's during certain dates.

McDonald's as any public restaurant has a responsibility to inform its customers, community of any health issue, failing to do so just compounds things. It appears that McDonald's is more concerned with its image versus its leadership in doing the right thing for the public.

This alone should give many pause in visiting any McDonald's or any fast food junket, period. Along with taxing sugar drinks, the likes of McDonald's surely should be taxed too. If we can tax cigarettes and alcohol which is known for unhealthy results, the likes of McDonald's should be taxed for the unhealthy food it offers the public.

Is it choice by the public? Yes, but throwing a tax on fast food, like we tax all the rest of the unsavory things that are bad for us, will make a person pause before ordering that Big Mac.


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