Along with the other 10 neighboring countries, now Tennessee is also combating the vital Hepatitis A outbreak with more than hundreds of people already sent to hospitals for further treatments. Kentucky only has more than thousands of cases of hepatitis A patients and second to the list comes West Virginia with more than 550 cases. Recently, Tennessee has also been mentioned on the list of hepatitis A outbreak states but with a smaller scale for now. Dr. Stephen May, the director of the Sullivan County Regional Health Department said that Tennesse usually has around 8-10 cases of Hepatitis A per year but now the numbers have reached to 87 and are still continuing.
The officials at Tennesee Department of Health are trying their limits best to vaccinate the incarcerated and homeless populations across the state with more than 12% of the cases reported from the inmates. The concerns have been growing over whether the virus can slip into the general population via the food service industries as most of the adults haven’t received the vaccines.
Stephen May also said that Hepatitis A is a greater concern when it comes to dealing with the public issues because if a person is carrying Hepatitis A infection and is working in a food factory or a place where lots of other people are involved, there is a high-risk rate that the disease can get transmitted. Children under the age of 13 are generally considered safe from the Hepatitis A as they usually get vaccinated before entering school.
The people who believe to be among the high-risk category can get the vaccination for Hepatitis A for free in the Tenessee Department of Health. If they want the vaccine as a precaution, they can get it from most of the insurance providers. Jamie Swith, who is the director of infection prevention for Ballad Heath said that it is crucial that people get vaccinated as Hepatitis A can be both mild and severe because there have been fatalities on this outbreak.