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Hepatitis A in South Powys – additional school vaccination session arranged

A further 110 people associated with a primary school and nursery will be offered Hepatitis A vaccination following an outbreak of the infection.

The vaccination session on Thursday 10 May will cover all remaining staff and pupils at Llangors Church in Wales Primary School, and the Mes Bach Nursery which also operates from the same site.

There are now three confirmed cases of Hepatitis A in the wider community, which includes two pupils that attend the school. The school is co-operating fully with arrangements for vaccination session, which is being undertaken by Powys Teaching Health Board.

The outbreak control team do not believe that the infection was contracted at the school, which is cooperating fully with arrangements.

Public Health Wales, with the environmental health department of Powys County Council and Powys Teaching Health Board, are continuing to investigate the source of the infection, deliver vaccinations and offer advice to close household contacts of the patients.

Vaccinations at the school are offered as a precautionary measure, as Hepatitis A spreads easily between young children, who will often not have symptoms but can still transmit infection to other people.

Dr Christopher Johnson, Consultant in Health Protection, Public Health Wales, said:

“Hepatitis A is a viral infection, usually short lived that has unpleasant symptoms but can be serious on rare occasions. Children often only have a very mild illness or do not have symptoms at all.

“Symptoms can include flu-like illness such as tiredness, general aches and pains, headaches and fever, as well as loss of appetite, nausea or vomiting, abdominal pains, jaundice, very dark urine and itchy skin.

“Good handwashing after using the toilet and before preparing or eating food is the best way to prevent the virus spreading.

“Children may pass the virus onto others without having symptoms so we are reminding parents to encourage good hand washing at all times.”

People are advised to contact their own GP or visit NHS Direct Wales at www.nhsdirect.wales.nhs.uk if they have any concerns about their health or their child’s health. You can also call NHS Direct Wales on 0845 4647 or dial 111 if you are registered with a GP practice in Swansea, Neath Port Talbot, Bridgend or Carmarthenshire.

Hepatitis A vaccination is not routinely offered on the NHS as the infection is rare in the UK.

Further information about Hepatitis A is available on the Public Health Wales website athttp://www.wales.nhs.uk/sitesplus/888/page/43692