UPDATE: Health official says hepatitis A cases on decline

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A health official in West Virginia says there's been a drop in the number of hepatitis A cases being reported.

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department is now helping manage 10 to 15 hepatitis A cases a week, which is down from 50 to 60 cases per week at the peak of the outbreak.

Health department Director of Epidemiology and Emergency Preparedness Janet Briscoe said officials there have worked with hospitals and other partners to try to get vaccines to at-risk populations.

She said the agency has investigated over 1,000 cases of hepatitis A.

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UPDATE: 7/13/2018 8:00 P.M.

West Virginia health officials say 540 confirmed cases of hepatitis A have been reported in the state.

The Department of Health and Human Resources says 297 of the cases are in Kanawha County. The totals are from Friday.

In Cabell County, the number of cases rose 21 percent this week to 114, up from 94 the previous week.

The cases have been linked to the virus strain found in a multistate outbreak.

The Cabell-Huntington Health Department will host a public forum at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday to field questions and share information.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says hepatitis A is a communicable disease of the liver caused by a virus. It is usually transmitted person-to-person or by consuming contaminated food or water.


Health officials in West Virginia say two more food service workers have been diagnosed with hepatitis A.

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department says in a news release one of them worked at a Taco Bell in Hurricane (HER'-a-kin) and the other at a Pizza Hut on MacCorkle Avenue in Charleston. The health department handles public health services for Kanawha and Putnam counties.

Department director of environmental health services Stanley Mills says no unsafe food handling practices were identified at either facility.

The state Bureau of Public Health says most of the dozens of hepatitis A cases in West Virginia have occurred in the Kanawha and Putnam counties.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says hepatitis A is a communicable disease of the liver caused by a virus. It is usually transmitted person-to-person or by consuming contaminated food or water.



 
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