UTICA, N.Y (WUTR-TV) — COVID-19 isn’t the only virus that’s being spread. Oneida County Department of Health says they’ve seen more cases of Hepatitis A, than years past.
“We only had a couple cases here and there in the past but I know it’s a lot of numbers. The numbers are high very high.” – Marina Kistner, RN, Oneida County Department of Health
Hepatitis A is a virus that causes inflammation in the liver. Symptoms include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, diarrhea, clay colored-stool, join pain and jaundice. It’s also very contagious.
“It’s mostly from food and water contamination. Sharing drinks, sharing food, eating off each other’s plate using utensils, traveling to another country, IV drug users.” – Marina Kistner, RN, Oneida County Department of Health
The best way to protect yourself is by practicing good hand hygiene and getting the 2-shot vaccination because once you’re sick, you’ll have symptoms for awhile.
“Once you get the disease you’ll always have it. You can get sick for a couple of weeks to a couple months.” – Marina Kistner, RN, Oneida County Department of Health
Nurse Kistner says the neighboring counties have also reposted an increase in cases, and they’re not sure why yet. Oneida County’s DOH says they’re actively investigating a cause.
“I am going to be going to some places and talk to some of the people, like some of the iv drug treatment centers and talk to them about their clients, maybe having them get tested. Go to the hospitals so they know what to look for for we can try to get the numbers down low.” – Marina Kistner, RN, Oneida County Department of Health
You must be at least 2 years old to get the vaccine. For more information visit the county’s website here.