TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Hepatitis A is spreading in Florida, and the state during the past two months has started taking aggressive steps to abate the virus, including issuing a public health emergency and spending $3 million to hire part-time staff to assist at county health departments.
The Florida Department of Health releases weekly data about reported cases, and The News Service of Florida has kept a running tally since July. Here is an analysis tracking the 10 counties with the largest increases in cases during the most-recent 10 week-period that ended Saturday. The analysis also shows the percentage increases in those counties during the period:
Volusia: 62 cases, 36 percent
Brevard: 46 cases, 74 percent
Pinellas: 40 cases, 12 percent
Citrus: 38 cases, 152 percent
Manatee: 38 cases: 46 percent
Lee: 37 cases, 97 percent
Pasco: 37 cases, 10 percent
Lake: 31 cases, 34 percent
Sarasota: 31 cases, 100 percent
Hillsborough: 26 cases, 23 percent
Note: As of Saturday, Pasco County had the most reported hepatitis A cases this year, with 392. It was followed by Pinellas County, with 363 cases, and Volusia County with 236 cases, according to a Department of Health report.