Indian River County Resident Dies from Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A vaccine.
Hepatitis A vaccine.

The Indian River County Health Department announced its first death from Hepatitis A for 2020 in January. Additionally, state officials reported a large increase in Hepatitis A cases last year, with 3,397 reported cases in the state compared to only 548 reported in 2018 and 276 cases in 2017.

The county has had a “highly unusual” number of Hepatitis A cases the last two months, said Stacy Brock, spokeswoman for Indian River County’s health department. She said she doesn’t know why there was an uptick.

People who should be vaccinated for Hepatitis A, according to the Indian River County Health Department:

  • All children at the age of 12 months
  • People who are experiencing homelessness
  • Users of recreational drugs, whether injected or not
  • Men who have sexual encounters with other men
  • People with direct contact with others who have hepatitis A
  • Travelers to countries where hepatitis A is common
  • People with chronic / long-term liver disease, including hepatitis B or hepatitis C
  • People with clotting-factor disorders
  • Family and caregivers of adoptees from countries where hepatitis A is common

Most pharmacy’s in Sebastian have the Hepatitis A vaccine in stock for anyone over the age of 18-year-old. Call ahead to verify they are in stock.

Bay Street Pharmacy, in Sebastian, has Hepatitis A vaccine in stock on a walk-in basis Monday-Saturday, and it is usually covered by insurance.

The Indian River County Health Department also offers the Hep A vaccine. Adult Immunizations – Ph: 772-794-7425 or Childhood Immunizations Ph: 772-794-7415.

If you believe you have a medical emergency, please call 911. Call the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at 800-232-4636 or visit CDC Vaccines for more information.

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About Tina Hodges 961 Articles
Tina Hodges is a Sebastian native. After graduating from Sebastian River High School, she studied Business Management & Marketing at Indian River State College. Tina worked for Dooney & Bourke for many years before she became our VP of Sales & Marketing & Journalist. Tina joined Sebastian Daily in 2016.