News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 

World Hepatitis Day: Get tested, get treated

Media Release

Thursday 26 July 2018

World Hepatitis Day: Get tested, get treated

Get tested, get treated – this is the message Southern DHB will be promoting again this year as part of World Hepatitis Day.

World Hepatitis Day takes place every year on 28 July to raise awareness of viral hepatitis and the impact it has worldwide. The theme for World Hepatitis Day 2018 is ‘Eliminate Hepatitis – find the missing millions’.

Southern DHB Clinical Nurse Specialist, Gastroenterology, Margaret Fraser says New Zealand has an estimated 25,000 people undiagnosed with Hepatitis C. “It’s thought these people are the ‘working well’, aged between 40 and 65 years, who see their GP infrequently (if ever).

“They’re at risk of having developed significant and advanced liver disease before being diagnosed with Hepatitis C as symptoms can be vague. Once liver disease has developed, people are at risk of developing liver cancer or failure.”

Treatment for Hepatitis C is improving all the time, and Pharmac is proposing to fund a new medication that has minimal side-effects and a cure rate of 99%. The only criteria to qualify for treatment is diagnosis of Hepatitis C infection.

“Affected individuals also no longer require a liver biopsy before treatment to check the overall health of the liver. Instead they have a Fibroscan, a non-invasive and simple test (similar to an ultrasound) that takes approximately five minutes,” says Margaret.

GP’s are ideally placed to screen for Hepatitis C and are now able to treat it in the community.

Who is at risk of Hep C?

People at risk of having Hep C might be able to say “yes” to any of the following questions:
• Have you ever had jaundice or abnormal liver function?
• Does your mother or a household member have Hep C?
• Have you ever lived in or received health care in South-East Asia, the Indian subcontinent, Middle East, Eastern Europe?
• Have you ever had a tattoo or a body piercing?
• Have you ever injected drugs or used intranasal drugs?
• Have you ever been in prison?
• Did you receive a blood transfusion prior to July 1992?

Less common risks include:

• Sexual practices with may risk blood contact with a person who is infected with the Hep C virus
• Sharing personal care items, such as razors or toothbrushes, which may have come into contact with the blood of an infected person.

“Our message is that testing saves lives – if you’re at risk of Hepatitis C talk to your Doctor about getting tested,” says Margaret.

For more information about Hepatitis C go to: https://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/conditions-and-treatments/diseases-and-illnesses/hepatitis-c

For more information about the new medication Pharmac is proposing to fund go to:
https://www.pharmac.govt.nz/news/consultation-2018-07-20-hep-c-glecaprevir-pibrentasvir/

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Howard Davis Review: The Minstrel in The Gallery - Sam Hunt's Selected Poems

Perhaps the most striking aspect of Sam Hunt's poetry is its quality of urgent authenticity. Encountering this latest compilation, the reader is immediately struck by its easy accessibility, tonal sincerity, and lack of linguistic pretension ... More>>

A Matter Of Fact: Truth In A Post-Truth World

How do we convincingly explain the difference between good information and misinformation? And conversely, how do we challenge our own pre-conceived notions of what we believe to be true? More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review Of Books: The Road To Unfreedom

Valerie Morse: Yale professor of history Tim Snyder publishes a stunning account of the mechanisms of contemporary Russian power in US and European politics. In telling this story he presents both startling alarms for our own society and some mechanisms of resistance. More>>

ALSO:

Doing Our Bit: An Insider's Account Of New Zealand Political Campaigning

In 2013, Murdoch Stephens began a campaign to double New Zealand’s refugee quota. Over the next five years he built the campaign into a mainstream national movement – one that contributed to the first growth in New Zealand’s refugee quota in thirty years. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland