The number of hepatitis A cases in the outbreak linked to frozen strawberries imported from Egypt stands at 102 in seven states, according to federal and state health officials.
As of Sep. 8, the breakdown of cases is as follows: Maryland (10), New York (1), North Carolina (1), Oregon (1), Virginia (83), West Virginia (5), and Wisconsin (1).
Epidemiologic and traceback evidence indicate frozen strawberries imported from Egypt are the likely source of this outbreak.
In interviews, nearly all ill people interviewed reported drinking smoothies containing strawberries at Tropical Smoothie Café locations prior to August 8.
Cases of hepatitis A have decreased dramatically over the last decade in large part due to successful vaccination programs and policies. Most new cases of hepatitis A are now related to international travel, and occasional foodborne outbreaks. Once a person becomes ill from hepatitis A, the virus can be easily transmitted to household or sexual partners. Thorough hand washing can help minimize transmission among close contacts.
The hepatitis A vaccine is recommended as part of routine childhood vaccinations and for adults at high risk.
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