As a result of hepatitis A outbreaks around the State, the Saginaw County Health Department (SCHD) would like to remind residents that vaccination and proper hand washing are your best defense against hepatitis A.
Saginaw County currently has confirmed two hepatitis A cases connected to the outbreaks occurring in southeast Michigan. As a result, SCHD is working with the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services (MDHHS) and local community partners to expand hepatitis A vaccination effots to high risk individuals in Saginaw County.
Hepatitis A Overview
Hepatitis A is a serious, highly contagious liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV). HAV is found in the feces (poop) of people with hepatitis A. You can get hepatitis A by eating contaminated food or water, during sex, or just by living with an infected person. Illness can appear 15-50 days after exposure and you can be sick for several weeks. In some cases, people can die. Although not all people infected with hepatitis A experience illness, symptoms can include:
There are steps you can take to reduce the risk of Hepatitis A transmission. Hepatitis A is a vaccine-preventable illness. While the hepatitis A vaccine is recommended as a part of the routine childhood vaccination schedule, most adults have not been vaccinated and may be susceptible to the hepatitis A virus. The best way to reduce the risk of getting hepatitis A is to get vaccinated with Hepatitis A vaccine. It is also recommended to wash your hands after going to the bathroom with soap and water for 20 seconds and before preparing meals for yourself and others. Do not have sex with someone who has HAV infection or share food, drinks, or smokes with other people.
Hepatitis A can be prevented with a safe and effective vaccine. We are encouraging persons in the high risk groups to get vaccinated.
*Note: individuals with chronic liver disease (e.g., cirrhosis and hepatitis C) may not be at increased risk of getting HAV infections but are at increased risk of having poor outcomes if they are infected with HAV.
Where to Get Vaccinated?