Hep A clinics scheduled

June 2, 2018 GMT

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department, which also provides public health services for the Putnam County Health Department, is scheduling hepatitis A vaccination clinics for restaurant and food service employees in Kanawha and Putnam counties as part of its response to the national Hepatitis A outbreak.

The first clinic was held Friday, May 25, at the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department. Nearly 500 individuals received vaccinations.

According to Christina Hinkle, director of clinic services for the health departments, “There is a high incidence of drug use reported in West Virginia and among the food industry. This is a proactive measure to vaccinate a high-risk group.”

Hepatitis A vaccination clinics, all running 8 a.m.-6 p.m., are scheduled for:

• May 31, Putnam County Courthouse, Second Floor, Old Courthouse

• June 1, St. George Conference Center (Court and Lee Streets)

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• June 1, Forrest Burdette Memorial United Methodist Church, 2848 Putnam Avenue, Hurricane

The Bureau for Public Health purchased an additional $550,000 in hepatitis A vaccines to support these clinics and to help eliminate cost as a vaccination barrier.

Things to remember when attending the clinics:

• The risk of hepatitis A transmission to the public remains low.

• The health department will bill for the cost of vaccination for anyone who has insurance coverage that pays for vaccinations. n No payment for copays or deductibles is required. Underinsured food services employees and those without insurance will receive the vaccinations free of charge.

• Each person receiving a vaccination is required to complete paperwork before the vaccination is administered. The May 25 clinic, where more than 500 individuals were served, saw waiting times of less than 10 minutes. Clinic officials will do all possible to move patients quickly though the process.

• Food service workers less than 18 years of age must have a parent or guardian present to grant permission for health department officials to administer the vaccinations.