World Hepatitis day observed at Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation

Globally every year 1.4 million people die from hepatitis, which can be transmitted from the mother to baby, via sexual contact or upon contact with infected blood.

The event is organized by the WHO in cooperation with the Mongolian government to mark World Hepatitis Day. 15%-20% of all chronic liver disease and hepatocellular cancer HCC in India are caused by HCV. On the eve of World Hepatitis Day, WHO Regional Director for South-East Asia Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh said it is estimated that less than one in 10 people infected with hepatitis, both worldwide and in the region, know whether they are affected by the condition, while less than 10 percent of those who do know to receive appropriate treatment.

They are root causes of liver cancer, leading to 1.34 million deaths every year. Direct treatment for hepatitis A is not now available, but there is a highly effective vaccine that individuals with risk factors should get. Increased levels of testing and diagnosis are essential if we are to reach our goal of eliminating hepatitis C as a major public health threat in the United Kingdom by 2030, at the latest.

According to World Health Organization, hepatitis B is a viral infection transmitted through contact with the blood or other body fluids of an infected person, which attacks the liver and can cause both acute and chronic disease.

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On 22 February 2018, the Ministry of Health announced the launch of the hepatitis C field inspections in the remanding 10 governorates, as a part of the Ministry's nation-wide initiative to eliminate the spread of the Hepatitis C by 2022. Treatment is required for only those who have an active infection, and has to be taken for long periods, often years.

Hepatitis is widespread in India, standing fourth among 11 countries which carry nearly 50 per cent of the global burden of chronic hepatitis. The commissioner said the World Hepatitis Day was set aside by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to increase awareness on viral hepatitis, improve its prevention, enhance early detection as well as to ensure prompt treatment, promote control efforts and ultimately eliminate it in the society. The alarming report showed that among people living in north India, hepatitis A and B is also prevalent. There are many causes of hepatitis like viral infections by hepatitis A, B, C, D and E, including auto-immune hepatitis, fatty liver hepatitis, alcohol-induced hepatitis and drug-related hepatitis. "If left untreated, hepatitis C can cause scarring of the liver, which slows down blood flow that's crucial for liver function".

The NMA vice president, therefore, advocated awareness campaigns in order to encourage people to seek adequate medical attention for common symptoms.

As with HBV, HCV is spread through direct exposure to blood or bodily fluids. Once diagnosed, it can be treated and cured. This, he said, would reduce the burden on the tertiary health facilities as people will not go there directly when they already have complications.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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