World Hepatitis Day is celebrated every year on July 28.
About World Hepatitis Day
- It intends to spread awareness about viral hepatitis, an inflammation of the liver that can cause severe liver disease and hepatocellular cancer.
- This day is marked on July 28 on the birthday of Nobel Prize-winning scientist Dr Baruch Blumberg to honour him.
- He discovered the Hepatitis B virus (HBV).
- He also developed a diagnostic test and vaccine to treat the Hep-B virus.
- Theme – This year the theme is ‘Hepatitis Can’t Wait’, conveying the urgency of efforts needed to eliminate hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030.
Fact sheet on the disease
- WHO has identified hepatitis as a major health concern for India.
- As per WHO, in India 2020, about 4 crore people were chronically infected with hepatitis B, and 60 lakh to 1.2 crore people with hepatitis C.
- According to the Indian Journal of Medical Research, in India, about 2,50,000 people die of viral hepatitis or its sequelae every year.
- Together, hepatitis B and C are the most common which result in 1.1 million deaths and 3 million new infections per year.
- Hepatitis refers to a highly contagious liver infection that causes an inflammation of the liver in which tissues react to irritation or injury which generally results in swelling and pain.
- Hepatitis is a group of infectious diseases known by its various variants, like A, B, C, D, and E.
- Hepatitis is commonly caused by a viral infection, but there are several risk factors, such as excessive consumption of alcohol, toxins, some medications and certain medical conditions.
Types of Hepatitis
There are 5 viruses that can cause viral hepatitis. These include: