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Martin Co. elected officials and law enforcement address Hep A cases

Posted: 3:58 PM, Jun 22, 2019
Updated: 2019-06-22 15:58:11-04

The Martin County Health Department has confirmed 24 Hepatitis A cases and a four confirmed death associated with the virus. Now Martin County elected officials and law enforcement are speaking out.

The latest victim's a 75-years-old man. His wife tells WPTV her husband had other health issues - but never recovered after contracting the virus in march.

”People are dying here and there’s no going back from that,” said Sheriff William D. Snyder.

The county’s sheriff is offering the health department trained criminal investigators to track the diseases source.

“What we could bring to the table and offer to the Department of Health - to the state people would be hands and boots on the ground going out and following back up and looking for leads trying to figure out where’s the source of this contamination,” said Snyder.

It’s an offer the sheriff says was made following the first death in the county associated with Hep A. State lawmaker Rep. Toby Oberdorf, Florida House of Representatives District 83, represents the district where the four death’s have occurred.

It’s an offer the sheriff says was made following the first death in the county associated with Hep A. State lawmaker Rep. Toby Oberdorf, Florida House of Representatives District 83, represents the district where the four death’s have occurred.

”I’m saddened,” he said.

Rep. Oberdorf also says what saddens him most are the four deaths - all people over the age of 50, yet not part of the “at risk population.”

But the lawmaker also says the there isn’t enough time and resources being spent on investigating.

”We had an outbreak that occurred almost 120-days ago and yet we don’t know where it came from we have no commonality whatsoever,” said Rep. Oberdorf. “The response that we’ve received is ‘please go get vaccinated’ and that of course is certainly the way to do it. However we don’t know where this is coming from.”

Rep. Oberdorf adds Florida's State Surgeon General is expected to be in Martin County on Tuesday to discuss an action plan moving forward.