World Hepatitis Day, observed annually on July 28th, is a day set aside to increase public awareness of viral hepatitis and its catastrophic effects on world health. This day, which is sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and its collaborators, provides a forum for promoting improved hepatitis prevention, diagnosis, and treatment. Despite the fact that this illness continues to kill without warning, World Hepatitis Day aims to draw attention to this frequently disregarded global health problem and inspire individuals, organisations, and governments to collaborate in the fight against it.
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What is World Hepatitis Day?
A set of infectious disorders known as viral hepatitis mostly affect the liver. Hepatitis A, B, C, D, and E are the five primary kinds. Due to their high rates of chronic infection, Hepatitis B and C are the most dangerous among them since they can cause serious liver consequences like cirrhosis, liver failure, and hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer), among others.
WHO estimates that 325 million individuals globally had chronic hepatitis infections in 2020 and that the disease was responsible for 1.4 million fatalities in the same year. The critical need for greater awareness and action to stop this silent pandemic is highlighted by these disturbing numbers.
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Significance of World Hepatitis Day
The following important goals of World Hepatitis Day support the broader fight against hepatitis:
Raising Awareness: The first step in prevention and control is education. By educating people on the many varieties of hepatitis, transmission methods, and protective measures, we enable them to safeguard both themselves and other people.
Encourage Testing and Diagnosis: A lot of people with hepatitis don’t know they have it. On World Hepatitis Day, people are urged to get tested because an early diagnosis can result in prompt treatment and stop the spread of the disease.
Promoting vaccination: This is important since it protects against hepatitis A and B. We can lower the occurrence of new illnesses by increasing vaccination programs, especially in high-risk groups.
Reducing Stigma: Hepatitis carries a heavy social stigma that makes it difficult to receive care and assistance and causes discrimination. The stigma surrounding the illness is lessened thanks to this day, making it easier for those who are afflicted to get care without worrying about being judged.
Promoting Healthcare Access: World Hepatitis Day draws attention to the importance of providing everyone, regardless of socioeconomic position, with access to affordable and reliable healthcare services.
Governments, NGOs, and communities are urged to collaborate in order to develop policies and initiatives that put a strong emphasis on hepatitis prevention, testing, and treatment.
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How to Celebrate World Hepatitis Day?
By commemorating World Hepatitis Day, one has the chance to support the global campaign to increase knowledge of viral hepatitis and its prevention. Here are a few ideas for how to observe this significant day:
- Spend some time learning more about the various varieties of viral hepatitis, the ways in which it is transmitted, and the precautions you may take. To raise awareness, send this information to your loved ones, close friends, and coworkers.
- Plan or take part in events like lectures, workshops, or webinars to inform your neighbourhood about hepatitis. To reach a larger audience, work together with neighbourhood health organizations, schools, or community centres.
- Make use of social media sites to disseminate educational articles, images, and videos on World Hepatitis Day. To reach a larger audience, use relevant hashtags.
- Encourage members of your community to get their hepatitis C virus levels checked. Collaborate with medical professionals to plan screening events that are either free or inexpensive on or around World Hepatitis Day.
- Hepatitis A and B vaccination drives should be supported or taken part in if you are in a position to do so. Focus on at-risk populations like nurses, persons who have had several sexual partners, and intravenous drug users.
- Jade green is the designated hue for hepatitis awareness. As a sign of support for those affected with hepatitis, wear a green ribbon or utilize green accessories.
- Arrange fundraising activities to aid groups supporting hepatitis prevention, research, and patient assistance. Donations can help persons with hepatitis gain better access to healthcare treatments.
- Write letters or emails pleading with your elected officials to give priority to hepatitis prevention and treatment initiatives to your local legislators. Promote improved healthcare regulations and more financing for hepatitis-related projects.
- Reach out to your neighbourhood newspapers, radio stations, or TV stations to inform them about World Hepatitis Day and to share your information about hepatitis. To get more media attention, offer to write articles or conduct interviews.
- In the event that physical gatherings are prohibited or restricted due to unanticipated events, take part in virtual events that are being held by international health organizations to commemorate World Hepatitis Day.
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World Hepatitis Day serves as a sombre reminder of the effect that viral hepatitis has on people all over the world and the urgent need for cooperation. We can make considerable progress toward eradicating this silent killer by increasing awareness, promoting testing, promoting vaccination, and reducing stigma.
Theme of World Hepatitis Day
|2023||We’re not waiting|
|2022||Bringing hepatitis care closer to you|
The date of 28 July was chosen because it is the birthday of Nobel-prize-winning scientist Dr Baruch Blumberg, who discovered the hepatitis B virus (HBV) and developed a diagnostic test and vaccine for the virus.
This year’s theme is “We’re not waiting.” WHD 2023 call to action is to “accelerate elimination efforts of viral hepatitis now
WHD is observed every year on July 28th, the birthday of Dr Baruch Blumberg (1925-2011). Dr Blumberg discovered the hepatitis B virus in 1967 and created the first hepatitis B vaccination two years later.
Let’s work together to eradicate hepatitis so that everyone can live a healthy life without having to worry about contracting this curable illness. Follow Leverage Edu for study abroad programs.