Raising Awareness of Hepatitis C in South Africa
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I am a South African taking a stand in the Global Epidemic of Viral Hepatitis! I am a Hepatitis C WARRIOR in our country where there is NO AWARENESS , NO MEDICATION AND NO SUPPORT OR SUPPORT GROUPS AVAILABLE!
New data from the WHO reveal that an estimated 325 MILLION people worldwide are living with chronic hepatitis and hepatitis infection. The WHO Global hepatitis report indicates that the large majority of these people lack access to life saving treatment and testing! As a result, millions are at risk of a slow progression to chronic liver disease, cancer and death. Viral hepatitis caused 1.34 million deaths in 2015, a number comparable to death's caused by hiv and tuberculosis. But while mortality from tb and hiv has been declining, deaths from hepatitis are on the increase!
Approximately 1.75 million people were newly infected with Hepatitis C in 2015 bringing the Global total of people living with Hepatitis C to 71 Million. This figure represents a substantial reduction in the Global estimate.
Hepatitis C affects 130-150 million people globally, of which South Africa is NOT IMMUNE , accounting for approximately 500 000 deaths each year, according to WHO!
The hepatitis c virus is a blood borne virus and latest statistics prove that baby boomers born between 1945 and 1965 are high risk to have contracted it as hepatitis c was in fact, only discovered in 1989. Baby boomers are those that had dental work, tattoos, vaccinations and blood transfusions prior to the bloods being screened here for hepatitis c, estimated screening started in 1995! The BAD STIGMA AND DISCRIMINATION comes from heroin and drug users from the 60s as it WAS considered the most common mode of infection by transmitting via unsafe injection practices. This places many of the health care workers at risk too, including doctors and dentists!
I'm currently setting up a Hepatitis Foundation in South Africa and I need government to to become active with me in my quest of RAISING AWARENESS, OF ASSISTING ME WITH EDUCATIONAL TOOLS AND MATERIALS AND JOIN HANDS IN THE GLOBAL FIGHT OF ELIMINATING VIRAL HEPATITIS.
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