San Diego’s Hepatitis A Emergency Has Ended, But Don’t Get Too Comfortable Yet

San Diego County officials have formally ended an emergency declaration stemming from an outbreak of Hepatitis A that began in November of 2016. The decision, which received public support from the Centers for Disease Control, was based on a steady decline of cases in the county.

"The outbreak activity has leveled off to near zero," said the county’s public health office Dr. Wilma Wooten.

Still, experts say it is important to remain vigilant. The county’s three-pronged approach -- vaccination, education, and sanitization -- seems to be working in bringing the catastrophic levels down. But a higher rate of Hepatitis A than in previous years appears to be the “new normal,” Deputy Public Health Offier Dr. Eric McDonald said.

The outbreak, which has affected 577 people since November 2016, has also brought a new sense of urgency to public discussions about homelessness in San Diego County. 

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