Less than 10% viral hepatitis-infected people get treatment
Less than 10% viral hepatitis-infected people get treatment
29 July, 2018, 05:01
India is among the 11 countries carrying almost 50 per cent of the global burden of chronic hepatitis. Every day, 1200 people in the Region die because they are unable to access effective hepatitis care. Around 40 million people are chronically infected with hepatitis B and 6 to 12 million people are chronically infected with hepatitis C in India.
"With the above statistics, which is about 20 percent, it means that one in five persons would have hepatitis". If the liver is grossly damaged and is unable to perform its work, it may have to be replaced by a liver transplantation.
" WHO South-East Asia is committed to supporting Member States find, test and treat the missing millions suffering viral hepatitis and to harness the full potential of available tools". These strains generally spread through infected blood. A Muslim faith leader, who acted as a witness to a recent Parliamentary inquiry on hepatitis C, stated that within the South Asian community there was the misconception that hepatitis C was only a "drug user's disease". Hasan highlighted the global, regional and national aspects of the hepatitis epidemic and the global strategy and response to halt and prevent its spread. As per Dr. Gupte, "hepatitis A and E can be prevented by food hygiene and use of safe water for drinking".
However, "over 95 per cent of people with chronic hepatitis do not know they are infected and therefore, succumb to liver cirrhosis or cancer", said Subhash Gupta, Chairman, from the Max Super Speciality Hospital, Saket. World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that in 2015, viral hepatitis was responsible for 1.34 million deaths per year.
The theme for this year -Eliminate Hepatitis - was highlighted through a health talk by Saikia where the significance of adopting preventive measures for reducing the spread of hepatitis B and C virus was explained.
Symptoms can take weeks or months to emerge Hepatitis is often hard to detect as it manifests with mild flu-like symptoms - fatigue, fever, and body aches - which are mostly neglected by individuals. These symptoms should never be ignored. Reuse of injection and unsafe injection practices adds to the risk of acquiring both Hepatitis B and C in medical settings.
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