Hepatitis A Health Alert
Increase in Hepatitis A cases in MSM in Australia
Hepatitis A is spread through person-to-person transmission, including sexual activity, and is not limited to MSM. Transmission can also occur whilst sharing injecting equipment such as needles, and through the consumption of contaminated food and water. Hep A is preventable - vaccination protects you and others in the community.
Are you travelling to Mardi Gras, or have you travelled recently interstate (Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras) or have travelled recently (MidSumma festival in Melbourne) interstate for business or pleasure? Don’t put yourself or others at risk. Talk to your GP or sexual health clinician if you think you may have come in contact, or could come in contact, with Hepatitis A.
It can take between 15 to 50 days to develop symptoms after a susceptible person comes into contact with Hepatitis A. Adults who get Hepatitis A usually develop symptoms, which include fever, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain, followed by dark urine and yellow skin/eyes (also known as Jaundice). The best way to find out if you have Hepatitis A is to get tested.
Getting vaccinated for Hep A?
Protection begins within 14-21 days after the first dose of the vaccine. A second dose of vaccine is required for long-term protection. The duration of immunity following vaccination is not certain, however, it appears to be at least 10 years, probably longer. Vaccination is safe, effective and provides the best protection against Hep A.Talk to your GP or sexual health clinician.