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WHO urges governments to act on hepatitis threat.


World Health Organization

Type: News
Region: Republic of Ireland
Northern Ireland

On World Hepatitis Day (28 July), WHO is urging governments to act against the five hepatitis viruses that can cause severe liver infections and lead to 1.4 million deaths every year. Some of these hepatitis viruses, most notably types B and C, can also lead to chronic and debilitating illnesses such as liver cancer and cirrhosis, and in addition to, loss of income and high medical expenses for hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Viral hepatitis is referred to as a ââ,¬Ëosilent epidemicââ,¬â"¢ because most persons do not realize that they are infected and, over decades, slowly progress to liver disease. Many countries are only now realizing the magnitude of the disease burden and devising ways to address it. ââ,¬Å"The fact that many hepatitis B and C infections are silent, causing no symptoms until there is severe damage to the liver, points to the urgent need for universal access to immunization, screening, diagnosis and antiviral therapy,ââ,¬Â says Dr Keiji Fukuda, WHO Assistant Director-General for Health Security and the Environment.



Rights: Public
Suggested citation:

World Health Organization. (2013) WHO urges governments to act on hepatitis threat. [Online]. Available from: [Accessed: 17th September 2019].


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