Focus on hepatitis testing and treatment ahead of World Hepatitis Day
Hepatitis is an infectious disease and a worldwide problem, with some 400 million people infected with Hepatitis B or C. That is why the United Nations has encouraged countries to increase testing and access to the required medicines for patients living with the disease.
According to Dr. Margaret Chan, Director General of the UN World Health Organization: “The world has ignored hepatitis at its peril. It is time to mobilize a global response to hepatitis on the scale similar to that generated to fight other communicable diseases like HIV AIDS and tuberculosis.”
Based on UN data, the number of people currently living with Hepatitis B or C is 10 times the number of people living with HIV.
In the first ever Global Health Sector Strategy on viral hepatitis, the World Health Assembly laid down a plan for treating 8 million people for hepatitis B or C by 2020, reducing the number of deaths by 65% by 2030 and to reduce new viral hepatitis infections by 90%.
Tying in with World Hepatitis Day on 28 July, Dr. Gottfried Hirnschall, WHO’s Director of the HIV Department and Global Hepatitis Programme, commented; “We need to act now to stop people from dying needlessly from hepatitis.” The theme for this year’s World Hepatitis Day is “Know hepatitis –Act now”, with this they are trying to motivate people to get tested and request treatment.
For more information on this, please go to: http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=54505#.V5co2E2JEdW