World Hepatitis Day: 28 July

Date: July 28, 2015

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World Hepatitis Day: Prevent hepatitis. Act now

The World Hepatitis Day is being observed every year on July 28 to spread awareness about viral hepatitis, that causes acute and chronic disease and kills around 1.4 million people every year.  It is being observed since 2010 and is one of the 8 official global public health campaigns marked by the World Health Organization (WHO). The theme of the year 2015 is  Prevent Hepatitis: It’s up to You.

On World Hepatitis Day, events will take place around the world focussing on preventing hepatitis B and hepatitis C.

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The date of 28 July was chosen for World Hepatitis Day in honour of the birthday of Nobel Laureate Professor Baruch Samuel Blumberg, discoverer of the hepatitis B virus and developer of the first hepatitis B vaccine.

Key messages of the World Hepatitis Day 2015

Prevent hepatitis – know the risks
Unsafe blood, unsafe injections, and sharing drug-injection equipment can all result in hepatitis infection.

Prevent hepatitis – demand safe injections
2 million people a year contract hepatitis from unsafe injections. Using sterile, single-use syringes can prevent these infections

Prevent hepatitis – vaccinate children
Approximately 780 000 persons die each year from hepatitis B infection. A safe and effective vaccine can protect from hepatitis B infection for life.

Prevent hepatitis – get tested, seek treatment
Effective medicines exist to treat hepatitis B and cure hepatitis C.

All about hepatitis A,B,C,E-

Hepatitis A-
Hepatitis A is a viral liver disease that can cause mild to severe illness.
The hepatitis A virus is transmitted through ingestion of contaminated food and water or through direct contact with an infectious person.
Almost everyone recovers fully from hepatitis A, but very small proportions die from fulminant hepatitis.
Hepatitis A infection risk is associated with a lack of safe water and poor sanitation.
Epidemics can be explosive and cause significant economic loss.
Improved sanitation and the hepatitis A vaccine are the most effective ways to combat the disease.

Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B is a viral infection that attacks the liver and can cause both acute and chronic disease.
The virus is transmitted through contact with the blood or other body fluids of an infected person.
An estimated 240 million people are chronically infected with hepatitis B (defined as hepatitis B surface antigen positive for at least 6 months).
More than 780 000 people die every year due to complications of hepatitis B, including cirrhosis and liver cancer1.
Hepatitis B is an important occupational hazard for health workers.
However, it can be prevented by currently available safe and effective vaccine.

Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis C virus: the virus can cause both acute and chronic hepatitis infection, ranging in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a serious, lifelong illness.
The hepatitis C virus is a bloodborne virus and the most common modes of infection are through unsafe injection practices; inadequate sterilization of medical equipment; and the transfusion of unscreened blood and blood products.
130–150 million people globally have chronic hepatitis C infection.
A significant number of those who are chronically infected will develop liver cirrhosis or liver cancer.
Approximately 500 000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver diseases1.
Antiviral medicines can cure approximately 90% of persons with hepatitis C infection, thereby reducing the risk of death from liver cancer and cirrhosis, but access to diagnosis and treatment is low.
There is currently no vaccine for hepatitis C; however research in this area is ongoing.

Hepatitis E
Every year there are an estimated 20 million hepatitis E infections, over 3 million symptomatic cases of hepatitis E, and 56 600 hepatitis E-related deaths.
Hepatitis E is usually self-limiting but may develop into fulminant hepatitis (acute liver failure).
The hepatitis E virus is transmitted via the faecal-oral route, principally via contaminated water.
Hepatitis E is found worldwide, but the prevalence is highest in East and South Asia.
China has produced and licensed the first vaccine to prevent hepatitis E virus infection, although it is not yet available globally.

Source:- WHO