At least one Denver Jail inmate being treated for hepatitis A

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DENVER — At least one inmate at the Denver Downtown Detention Center is being treated for hepatitis A, according to the Denver Sheriff Department and Denver Health Medical Center.

“The Denver Sheriff Department and Denver Health took swift action to follow protocols and both Denver Sheriff Department and Denver Health leadership have been involved with addressing this issue. Vaccines and education about Hepatitis A has been offered to all involved,” said Daria Serna, a spokesperson for the sheriff department.

The risk of illness to the general public is low, but hepatitis A is highly contagious and is a vaccine-preventable disease of the liver.

Hepatitis A can be spread through the sharing of drugs and equipment, through fecal-oral contamination or intimate contact with a person who has the disease, officials said.

In July, health officials warned of a hepatitis A outbreak in the Denver area.

Symptoms include jaundice, nausea, cola-colored urine and fatigue.

Washing hands with soap and water after using a restroom and before handling food will reduce the risk of transmission.

Health officials said children are at a low risk of contracting the disease because the vaccine has been a part of standard childhood immunizations for more than a decade.

But unvaccinated adults should consider a vaccination with their health care provider.

Anyone at a high risk of contracting hepatitis A can find a free vaccination clinic online or by calling the Denver Public Health immunization clinic at 303-602-3520.

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