World Hepatitis Day, 28 July 2013
WHO World Hepatitis Day is marked to increase the awareness and understanding of viral hepatitis and the diseases that it causes. It provides an opportunity to focus on specific actions such as:
- strengthening prevention, screening and control of viral hepatitis and its related diseases;
- increasing hepatitis B vaccine coverage and integration into national immunization programmes; and
- coordinating a global response to hepatitis.
Hepatitis viruses A, B, C, D and E can cause acute and chronic infection and inflammation of the liver leading to cirrhosis and liver cancer. These viruses constitute a major global health risk with around 240 million people being chronically infected with hepatitis B and around 150 million people being chronically infected with hepatitis C.