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Letcher health officials urging Cherokee Lake campers to get vaccine




The Letcher County Health Department was expected to administer 120 Hepatitis A vaccines this week to those who have visited campgrounds along Cherokee Lake in the last few weeks.

Eight cases of Hepatitis A were recently confirmed among people who live near or have visited Cherokee Lake.

“From what we know right now, it was near the Mooresburg community of Hawkins County and they are advising people who live in or visited that area to get a Hepatitis A shot,” said Sheila Hogan, lead nurse at the Letcher County Health Department.

Hogan said the shot is supposed to be effective in preventing infection if given within two weeks of exposure.

The health department ordered 120 Hepatitis A vaccines for those who have been to Cherokee Lake since May 14.

“We are opening it up to anyone who is concerned,” said Lana Polly-Mullins, director of the Letcher County Health Department.

Hepatitis A is a virus, which attacks the liver. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and discomfort, fever, loss of appetite and jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin). The illness can last several weeks and can spread through the feces of infected persons or through contaminated food or water.

Hogan said small children may be infected but may not have symptoms. The vaccine is for children who are at least one year old.


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