We are understandably focused on the recent hepatitis A outbreak linked to organic strawberries that has sickened at least 27 in the United States and Canada. However, in the United States we have had a nationwide hepatitis problem since 2016. Since the outbreaks were first identified in 2016, 37 states have publicly reported the following as of June 3, 2022

  • Cases: 44,301
  • Hospitalizations: 27,086 (61%)
  • Deaths: 421

According to the CDC, when hearing about hepatitis A, many people think about contaminated food and water. However, in the United States, hepatitis A is more commonly spread from person to person. Since March 2017, CDC’s Division of Viral Hepatitis (DVH) has been assisting multiple state and local health departments with hepatitis A outbreaks, spread through person-to-person contact.

The hepatitis A vaccine is the best way to prevent hepatitis A virus (HAV) infection