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Posted on: June 11, 2019

County Public Health Teams with EMS, Sheriff to Prevent Hepatitis A in Community

June 11, 2019 – Clear Creek County Communications, Colo. Clear Creek County Public Health, Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and the Sheriff’s Office teamed together yesterday to vaccinate 63 at-risk persons in the County, voluntarily—mainly:  inmates at the jail, uninsured residents, homeless persons, veterans, seasonal workers, and restaurant food handlers.  Held at four locations (Georgetown County Courthouse, Idaho Springs Resource Center, in the jail, and an EMS mobile unit), the day focused on educating the general public on Hepatitis A—how it is spread, what are the symptoms, and how it is prevented.  The first shot (which is extremely safe) gives a solid level of coverage, and is typically followed by a second shot six months later to complete protection.    

“This is really a first of its kind scenario for our County,” said Cindy Dicken, County Health and Human Services Division Chief.  The scenario Ms. Dicken refers to is the County’s response to a recent outbreak of Hepatitis A around Colorado, prompting many health care communities and this vaccination effort.  The Public Health & EMS Team went to restaurant owners in the County, talked with homeless residents, reached out to the rafting companies (who employee dozens of seasonal employees) and others to ensure as many people as possible had the opportunity to get the ‘Hep A’ shot.  Clear Creek County has no current Hep A reports.        

“We have a great team that wants to do great things for our community, and this was just one example of the help they are always giving,” said Ms. Dicken. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control, “…Hepatitis A is a highly contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus.  It can range from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months.  Although rare, hepatitis A can cause death in some people. Hepatitis A usually spreads when a person unknowingly ingests the virus from objects, food, or drinks contaminated by small, undetected amounts of stool from an infected person…”  To learn more, go to:    https://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/hav/afaq.htm . 

For those who didn’t get a chance to be vaccinated, contact Crystal Brandt, cbrandt@co.clear-creek.co.us , County Public Health Nurse, or call:  303-670-7545.


-CCC-


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