Wales

Hepatitis A vaccination offer after Corwen outbreak

Ysgol Caer Drewyn Image copyright Google
Image caption The vaccination session at Corwen's Ysgol Caer Drewyn takes place on Monday

About 170 pupils and staff at a primary school are being offered Hepatitis A vaccinations after an outbreak in Denbighshire and south Gwynedd.

There have been seven confirmed cases, including three pupils attending Ysgol Caer Drewyn, Corwen, Denbighshire.

Experts do not believe the infection was contracted at the school.

It creates flu-like symptoms such as tiredness, aches, headaches, fever, loss of appetite, nausea or vomiting.

It can also cause abdominal pains, jaundice, itchy skin and can make urine appear very dark in colour.

The vaccination session for pupils, siblings and staff will be held next Monday by Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board.

It is being offered as a precaution as Hepatitis A spreads easily between young children, who will often not have symptoms but can transmit the infection, according to Public Health Wales.

The latest outbreak is not being linked to two others in Rhyl.

Health protection consultant Dr Christopher Johnson said: "Hepatitis A is a viral infection, usually short lived, that has unpleasant symptoms but is rarely serious.

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

People are advised to contact their own GP or NHS Direct Wales if they have any concerns.

Hepatitis A vaccination is not routinely offered on the NHS, as the infection rate is low in the UK, with under 450 cases in 2016 - and just five of those cases in Wales.

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