Maine CDC to provide hepatitis A vaccinations in Portland

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PORTLAND — The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention will hold two free clinics for vaccinations against hepatitis A at the Preble Street Resource Center, 5 Portland St.

A clinic on Wednesday, Oct. 31, will run from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. A Thursday, Nov. 1, clinic will run from noon-4 p.m., according to a CDC press release.

The CDC on Monday confirmed a shelter guest at Oxford Street Shelter and Florence House, who also spent time at Preble Street, was infected with hepatitis A and in contact with others during an infectious period from Oct. 1-21.

Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease that infects victims through a virus, according to the CDC. It can be spread “through the sharing of personal items such as cups, utensils, towels, toothbrushes, cigarettes, pipes, syringes, and sexual contact,” according to the press release.

Symptoms of hepatitis A include “tiredness, low appetite, stomach pain, nausea, dark urine, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes),” and the illness ranges in its severity, the CDC said. The virus can also be spread through contaminated food or water.

The CDC posts more information on hepatitis A at https://bit.ly/2vFM17B.

Anyone who has been in contact with someone infected with hepatitis A is urged to seek medical care. The virus is preventable through a vaccination, but kills about 100 people annually in the U.S.

David Harry can be reached at 780-9092 or dharry@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidHarry8.

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Portland City Hall reporter for The Forecaster. Baltimore native, lived in Maine since 1989. A journalist since 2005, covering much of Cumberland and York counties. I joined The Forecaster in 2012.