SAN DIEGO – Two years in, San Diego’s hepatitis A outbreak is finally over.
Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county’s public health officer, said Monday that enough time has now passed to formally declare a curtain call for the contagion that killed 20, sickened nearly 600 and spurred a complete re-think of how the region handles homelessness.
“Last Thursday, it was officially 100 days since the most-recent case, and, for hepatitis A, that’s the threshold we use that allows us to say it no longer meets the definition of an outbreak,” Wooten said.
Detected by the health department in late February 2017, infectious disease sleuths tracked the first likely case to the week of Nov. 22, 2016. By late spring of last year, there were hundreds of cases, a dozen deaths and a growing public outcry that something had to be done about the unsanitary living conditions among the region’s homeless population.