HBV: Hepatitis B virus
HepB-BD: Hepatitis B birth dose
Did you know?
Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver, most commonly caused by viral infection. There are five main hepatitis viruses, referred to as types A, B, C, D and E. Every 30 seconds, a person dies from a viral hepatitis related illness. The disease can affect anyone, but it has a disproportionate effect on the people and communities most underserved by health systems.
Chronic hepatitis B and hepatitis C are life-threatening infectious diseases that cause serious liver damage, cancer, and premature death, and other extrahepatic manifestations including diabetes, skin rash, arthritis, and renal failure. However, often infections are silent and do not manifest until it has progressed to the stage of primary liver cancer. Globally, 354 million people are living with the hepatitis B or C virus.
The WHO African region has the highest HBV prevalence of hepatitis B virus (HBV, 7.5%), with 82.3 million persons living with chronic HBV infection. Two of every three children infected with HBV globally are born in Africa and HBV infection acquired at birth or in early childhood is a major cause of primary liver cancer in adulthood (1).
It is recommended that routine hepatitis B vaccination for all infants beginning with a first dose within 24 hours of birth (hepatitis B birth dose or HepB-BD) and 2 or 3 additional doses to complete the infant vaccination series is important
Vaccination programmes that offer Hep B vaccines (beginning with a birth dose) have demonstrated large reductions in the prevalence of HBV infection and related mortality.
As of 2022, only 18 (33%) of 55 African Union Member States had introduced HepB-BD vaccination.
Among persons born during 2020-2030, scaling up HepB-BD vaccine coverage to ≥90% by 2030 (2) will avert:
- 41 million chronic HBV infections globally
- 710,000 deaths globally, including 554,318 (78%) in African countries
Africa CDC is not waiting.
Through its flagship Continental Viral Hepatitis Prevention and Control Programme, Africa CDC has been supporting activities that will accelerate the achievement of the objectives of the Cairo declaration on viral hepatitis in Africa, one of the key AU strategic documents calling for the elimination of viral hepatitis B and C on the continent. This document was adopted in February 2020 by all African Union Heads of State and Government to catalyse public health action towards reaching viral hepatitis elimination by 2030.
The World Hepatitis Day on 28th July gives us an opportunity to join all stakeholders such as the World Health Organization and the World Hepatitis Alliance to raise awareness on the public health importance of this silent killer and to call on Member States to invest more in the fight against Hepatitis B and C in Africa to reach viral hepatitis elimination by 2030.
- Every 30 seconds globally, someone loses their life to a hepatitis-related illness. Don’t wait, get tested.
- Getting tested for Hepatitis to saves lives, so Don’t Wait!
- Don’t wait! get tested for Hepatitis, protect your loved ones.
- Hepatitis B vaccination can save your child’s life. Don’t wait, get them vaccinated.
- If you are an expecting mother, get screened for Hepatitis, Don’t wait!
- Don’t wait! tell your community to get tested for Hepatitis to save their lives.
- Hepatitis can be managed; you have nothing to worry about. Don’t wait to get tested!
How can you join the campaign?
- Download an e-flyer and post it on your social media using the campaign hashtag and tagging @AfricaCDC.
Click here: here
- Use one of the key messaging to create your own personalized poster using the campaign hashtag and tagging @AfricaCDC.
- Repost, share our posts using the campaign hashtag and tagging @AfricaCDC.
- Be a champion and raise awareness about hepatitis. Tell your community to get tested.
- Vaccinate your child against hepatitis B and tell your community to get their child vaccinated.
Raïssa Litete Beyande, Campaign and Promotion Officer – Policy, Health Diplomacy & Communication: Africa CDC | Email: LiteteR@africa-union.org
Dorothy Wambeti Njagi, Senior Communication Officer – Policy, Health Diplomacy & Communication: Africa CDC | Tel: +251 940 559 950 | Email: email@example.com
About Africa CDC
The Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) is a continental autonomous Public Health agency of the African Union which supports Member States in their efforts to strengthen health systems and improve surveillance, emergency response, prevention and control of diseases.
Learn more at: http://www.africacdc.org
About the African Union
The African Union spearheads Africa’s development and integration in close collaboration with African Union Member States, the Regional Economic Communities and African citizens.
AU Vision: to accelerate progress towards an integrated, prosperous and inclusive Africa, at peace with itself, playing a dynamic role in the continental and global arena, effectively driven by an accountable, efficient and responsive Commission.
Learn more at: http://www.au.int/