Assemblymember Gloria’s Request for State Audit of San Diego’s Response to Hepatitis A Outbreak Granted

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

City and County’s Response to Hepatitis A to be Evaluated by State Auditor, Gloria Seeks to Ensure Public Safe from Future Health Crises

SACRAMENTO, CA – Today, the Joint Legislative Audit Committee (JLAC) officially approved the request by California State Assemblymember Todd Gloria (D-San Diego) for a state audit to review the City and County of San Diego’s response to the Hepatitis A outbreak that claimed the lives of 20 people and infected more than 500 last year.

This is welcome news that the State Auditor will officially and independently evaluate San Diego’s response to the Hepatitis A outbreak. My hope is this audit will help us learn what went wrong, what went right, and how we, as a region, can improve for any future public health emergencies,” said Assemblymember Todd Gloria. “We owe it to those who got sick and those who died to ask the tough questions about this tragedy. This is a matter of protecting San Diegans and the quality of life we all cherish.”

The Hepatitis A outbreak in San Diego County was identified in March 2017. Six months later, county leaders declared a public health emergency as the number of confirmed cases had risen at a remarkable rate to 352 with four people dead. The County officially ended the public health emergency declaration on January 23, 2018. 

In documents presented to JLAC as part of today’s committee hearing, the State Auditor confirmed it “will provide independently developed and verified information related to how the county of San Diego and the city of San Diego identified, contained, and treated the recent hepatitis A outbreak.” The State Auditor estimates five months for the audit to be completed.

Assemblymember Gloria submitted his request for a state audit to JLAC on April 9, 2018. JLAC is a 14-member committee consisting of members from both the State Assembly and State Senate. It is charged with independently, and with the assistance of the California State Auditor’s Office, overseeing the operations and finances of government and publicly-created entities in California.