Recently a food service worker from Camp Ross was diagnosed with hepatitis A. While the risk to campers and parents is low, out of an abundance of caution we wanted to inform units present at camp July 10-18, 2016.
From the Hepatitis A Fact Sheet:
Recently, a food service worker at the Goshen Scout Reservation was diagnosed with hepatitis A. The worker helped with preparation of cooked foods in Camp Ross during a period when they may have been able to transmit the virus to others. This letter is being sent to the parents of scouts who ate at the dining hall when the worker was contagious: July I 0 through July 18 . While we feel that the risk to campers is likely low, out of an abundance of caution, we did want to make parents aware so that they can monitor for any symptoms of illness. If your child has received the two vaccine hepatitis A series in the past, or if they have had hepatitis A in the past, they are protected from infection.
Hepatitis A is caused by a virus that is passed in the stool (bowel movement) of infected persons. There is a delay of several weeks between the time a person acquires this infection and the time they become ill. The symptoms of hepatitis A may include fatigue, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dark urine, light-colored stools, and possible yellowing of the skin or the whites of the eyes. Typically, young children do not show any signs of illness despite being infected. Often it is only when an adult who was in contact with an infected child who did not have any symptoms becomes ill, that the child’s illness is detected. Most persons completely recover from the disease without any longterm problems.
Once infected, a person is capable of passing the virus to others from approximately two weeks before onset of symptoms until one week after. Virus may be transmitted to close contacts and family members, and it may be transmitted through foods or utensils handled by an infected person.
lf your child, or another member of your family, should develop any of the symptoms of hepatitis, contact your family physician or the local health department. Central Shenandoah Health District would be happy to answer any questions that you may have. The contact information for our health director is listed below.
Laura P. Kornegay, MD, MPH
District Health Director
540-332-7830 X 341
laura.kornegay@vdh. virginia. gov