World Hepatitis Day
August 2, 2017
World Hepatitis Day took place on 28 July, providing an opportunity to promote all the initiatives aimed at implementing the first Global health sector strategy on viral hepatitis 2016-2021, and to assist Member States in achieving the ultimate goal of eliminating hepatitis.
The WHO will support the "Eliminate Hepatitis" campaign by publishing new information on the responses the 28 countries with the greatest hepatitis burden are carrying out nationally.
11 countries account for almost 50% of the global burden of chronic hepatitis: Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Uganda and Vietnam.
In addition, 17 countries have a high prevalence of the disease and, together with the first 11, bear 70% of the global burden: Cambodia, Cameroon, Colombia, Ethiopia, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Morocco, Nepal, Peru, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Thailand, Tanzania, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and Zimbabwe.
The key messages of World Hepatitis Day 2017 are as follows:
1. Viral hepatitis is a major global health problem and a response is needed urgently.
2. Very few those infected accessed testing and treatment, especially in low- and middle-income countries.
3. Viral hepatitis caused 1.34 million deaths in 2015 - a figure comparable to that of tuberculosis deaths and higher than that of HIV deaths. Deaths from hepatitis are on the rise.
4. New hepatitis infections continue to occur, especially hepatitis C.
5. Eradicating hepatitis by 2030 is not an overly ambitious target; reports from the 28 countries with the greatest burden from this disease are cause for optimism.