Cases of hepatitis B and C hit 325 million

Geneva : An estimated 325 million people are living with hepatitis B or C and few are aware of their condition, with death tolls from the viruses rising, the UN said Friday. 

The World Health Organization's latest hepatitis report identifies the condition as a grave public health threat that needs an "urgent response."

Hepatitis killed 1.34 million people in 2015, a toll roughly in-line with HIV and tuberculosis. 

But in contrast to HIV and TB, hepatitis deaths are increasing, WHO said, recording a 22 percent mortality rise from 2000 to 2014. 

Hepatitis is often symptom free, but types B and C can trigger liver cirrhosis and cancer if untreated. 

Lack of awareness among those infected is driving the virus's spread. 

For hepatitis B -- which is spread through bodily fluids like blood and semen -- only nine percent of those infected know their status. 

And for hepatitis C, primarily spread through blood, just 20 percent of those infected are aware of their condition. 

Lack of access to testing and treatment leaves "millions of people at risk of a slow progression to chronic liver disease, cancer and death", WHO said in a statement. 

The hepatitis B problem is most acute in the WHO's Western Pacific Region, which includes China, Malaysia and southeast Asia. An estimated 115 million people in the region have the virus. 

Second worst is Africa, with 60 million hepatitis B cases. 

An effective vaccine exists for hepatitis B.   

WHO's latest data shows that hepatitis C -- for which there is no vaccine -- is most commonly spread through unsafe injections, notably among drug users.

Europe and the eastern Mediterranean region are afflicted with the most hepatitis C cases at 14 million and 15 million respectively. 

WHO is trying to ramp up the global hepatitis response, aiming to treat some 80 percent of sufferers worldwide by 2030. 



article-image

With you... 9 months and beyond

As an obstetrician/gynaecologist, there is nothing that gives me more pleasure than helping my patients through the miracle of childbirth. It is the culmination of all my studies and clinical training to help deliver a new baby into the world.

article-image

Ramadan preparation for diabetic patients

With less than a month away to start the holy month of Ramadan, all patients with diabetes who wish to fast during Ramadan should undergo the required arrangements to undertake the fast as safely as possible. These include medical assessment and educational coun

article-image

Top DJ Avicii dies in Oman at 28

Muscat : Avicii, one of the world's most successful DJs has passed away. He was 28. Two years after his unusually early retirement, the Swedish DJ was found dead on a visit to the Gulf kingdom's capital Muscat, a statement said without specifying a cause.


  • Predict & Win - Fifa world cup 2018
article-image

Legendary Aston Martin driven by James Bond is found

A legendary Aston Martin driven by James Bond in Goldfinger could have been found more than twenty years after it was stolen from a Florida airport. The 1964 DB5 - which was equipped with machine guns and tyre-bursting blades for Sean Connery’s 007 - could have been found in the Middle Ea

article-image

New law to curb free visa trading

The Parliament will this week vote on a draft law that will impose stricter penalties on those involved in selling work visas. According to the new law, fines will be increased from the existing BD1,000 to BD8,000 apart from one year imprisonment. MP Adel Al Asoomi said the proposed law aims at

article-image

Expat in ordeal as wife gets deported

An expat, who lost his voice after suffering a physical disorder, is stuck in the Kingdom as his wife was deported. Abdul Quam, 65, came to Bahrain as a labourer and a year ago he was diagnosed with a peculiar medical condition. With an aim to take care of her husband apart from finding a job f

article-image

French jogger detained after crossing US-Canada border

A young French woman who went for an evening jog along a Canadian beach spent two weeks in US immigration detention after straying across the border. Cedella Roman, 19, who was visiting her mother in British Columbia, decided to run along the beach that leads to Canada’s border with the U

article-image

Netflix chief spokesman axed over use of N-word

Netflix sacked its chief spokesman Jonathan Friedland, he revealed on Friday, after he used the N-word twice in the space of a few days during meetings with staff. The head of communications announced his departure after being upbraided for a second time for using the racial slur, which i

article-image

Thousands join march to call for Brexit deal referendum

Around 100,000 supporters of the European Union marched through central London yesterday to demand that the British government hold a final public vote on the terms of Brexit, organisers said. Protesters packed the main arteries of the capital, waving British, Irish and European flags and

article-image

Dealers cheer as driving ban goes

Cradling her four-month-old daughter, Nour Obeid scans the car showroom and heads to the mid-sized SUVs. In the past, a woman looking to buy a car in Saudi Arabia would focus on the features in the back, but Obeid is checking out the driver’s seat, picturing herself doing grocery st

article-image

Evil dead sequel will happen

Director Fede Alvarez said there is a ‘possibility’ that he may come up with a sequel to his ‘Evil Dead’ reboot. Last week the filmmaker agreed on Twitter to make a sequel to his 2013 film. “I love those movies. Making my ‘Evil Dead’ was an amazin

article-image

Nick Jonas shows love for Priyanka on social media

Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas have consistently been spotted together, but never confirmed their relationship publicly. But the American singer-songwriter has finally confirmed the status with the actress on social media. Jonas, 25, took the huge step of sharing a post on Instagram of Pr