WORLD HEPATITIS DAY
World Hepatitis Day on July 28 raises global awareness every year concerning hepatitis. The day encourages prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
Hepatitis infects more than 350 million people worldwide. While it is one name, it’s a group of infectious diseases. Five types of hepatitis infections are possible: A, B, C, D, and E. Hepatitis A is always an acute, short-term disease, while hepatitis B, C, and D are most likely to become ongoing and chronic. Hepatitis E is usually acute but can be particularly dangerous in pregnant women.
Depending on the type of hepatitis, many people don’t develop symptoms in the early stages. As a result, an estimated additional 3 million people in the world are infected but don’t know it. Routine testing lowers these numbers. However, those who need the screenings most may not know how to access them.
Other risk factors associated with hepatitis include cirrhosis and liver cancer. Moreover, the disease contributes to 399,000 deaths worldwide each year.
On July 28, health care organizations in 100 countries will offer free screenings. There may also be other public vaccination drives or public awareness campaigns. At the end of the year, the World Health Organization and the World Hepatitis Alliance organize a report detailing all the events across the world.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Learn the difference between the five types of hepatitis from the Center for Disease Control.
Watch a video on hepatitis produced by the US. Department of Health and Human Services.
Get on social media with #WorldHepatitisDay to follow the conversation.
- 2004 – First International Hepatitis C Awareness Day set as October 1.
- 2008 – First World Hepatitis Day set as May 19
- 2010 – The idea of World Hepatitis Day originated in Cuttack, Odisha. July 28 was proposed as the day to in honor of Nobel Laureate Baruch Samuel Blumberg, discoverer of the hepatitis B virus, whose birthday on that date.
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