Ohio hepatitis A cases hit 1,600 but outbreak not new, officials say

The Ohio Department of Health says reports that wrongly imply a newly declared outbreak of hepatitis A are circulating around the state, apparently prompted by a recent case involving a restaurant worker.

A statewide outbreak of hepatitis A was declared last summer. Department spokesman J.C. Benton said Monday that outbreak is ongoing, but no further outbreak has been announced and there’s no new cause for concern.

FLORIDA ITALIAN RESTAURANT EMPLOYEE INFECTED WITH HEPATITIS A

The department says more than 1,600 cases have been reported statewide since January 2018. It urges people considered at high risk for the disease to consider vaccination.

Neighboring states also have seen outbreaks of hepatitis A.

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The disease is transmitted by oral contact with fecal matter, even in microscopic amounts. It attacks the liver and causes symptoms including abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, fever and jaundice.