Hepatitis B Awareness Week May 17-23


5/3/2010

World Hepatitis Day 2010

The Cambridge City Council supports raising awareness of the risks and consequences of chronic hepatitis B infection, and the urgency for a robust governmental and public health response to protect the health of Cambridge residents.  Therefore, the City Council has declared the week of May 17-23 Hepatitis B Awareness Week, in conjunction with World Hepatitis Week. The goal of Hepatitis B Awareness Week is to highlight the global nature of chronic viral hepatitis epidemics and recognize the need for a comprehensive public education and awareness campaign designed to help infected patients and their physicians identify and manage the secondary prevention of the disease, and to help increase the length and quality of life for those diagnosed with chronic hepatitis B infection; and

Backgrounder Information

* Chronic viral hepatitis is the most common blood borne infection in the United States, there is currently no routine and universal screening in place for early detection;

* Hepatitis B is a serious infection of the liver caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV), and can lead to premature death from liver failure or liver cancer, with an estimated 46,000 new infections domestically each year;

* HBV is dubbed a "silent killer" because it often infects people without symptoms, and when symptoms do appear, it is often too late for treatment to be effective;

* A simple 3-shot hepatitis B vaccine can provide lifelong protection against HBV

* Although Asians represent less than 10% of the total population in the Boston area, they account for greater than 50% of new chronic hepatitis B cases;

Additional Local Resources:

Team HBV is the outreach arm of the Jade Ribbon Campaign. Our mission is to increase awareness of the dangers of Hepatitis B and liver cancer. We are an international community comprised of collegiate chapters, high school chapters and local volunteers based out of the Asian Liver Center.

For more information on Team HBV visit: http://liver.stanford.edu/ and http://teamhbv.org/

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