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World Hepatitis Day

26 Jul 2021

World Hepatitis Day takes place on 28 July each year to raise awareness of the worldwide burden of viral infections of the liver (hepatitis).

Every 30 seconds, a person dies from a hepatitis related illness:

  • Hepatitis B and hepatitis C kill more people every year than diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis
  • Hepatitis B and hepatitis C are responsible for 2 out of 3 deaths caused by liver cancer
  • 290 million people are unaware they are living with hepatitis
  • The cost of hepatitis B vaccines for new born babies is minimal, yet they still aren’t given to babies in 48% of countries worldwide
  • Eliminating hepatitis B and hepatitis C as public health threats by the year 2030 would prevent approximately 36 million infections and save 10 million lives

The theme for the 2021 global campaign is 'Hepatitis can’t wait' highlighting that more needs to be done to try to eliminate hepatitis by the year 2030, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • those unware they are living with viral hepatitis can’t wait for testing
  • those living with hepatitis can’t wait for life saving treatments
  • pregnant women can’t wait for hepatitis screening and treatment
  • new born babies can’t wait for birth dose vaccination
  • those living with hepatitis can’t wait to end stigma and discrimination
  • community hepatitis support organisations can’t wait for more funding
  • decision makers can’t wait and must act now to prioritise hepatitis elimination through political decisions and funding

See the World Hepatitis Alliance website for further information, including how you can get involved with the World Hepatitis Day 2021 campaign.