Eliminating hepatitis calls for ‘bold political leadership, with investments to match,’ UN health chief says

UNICEF/Ilvy Njiokiktjien This pentavalent vaccine, used at a health centre in Mali, is a combined vaccine with five individual vaccines conjugated into one, intended to actively protect people from multiple diseases, including hepatitis B. (9 March 2018)

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.


Calling for “bold political leadership” ahead of World Hepatitis Day, the UN World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday urged countries to take advantage of recent reductions in the costs of diagnosing and treating viral hepatitis and scale up investments in disease elimination.
new study by WHO, published on Friday in Lancet Global Health, found that investing $6 billion per year in eliminating hepatitis in 67 low- and middle-income countries would avert 4.5 million premature deaths by 2030, and more than 26 million deaths beyond that target date.

A total of $58.7 billion is needed to eliminate viral hepatitis as a public health threat in these 67 countries by 2030. This means reducing new hepatitis infections by 90 per cent and deaths by 65 per cent.

“Today 80 per cent of people living with hepatitis can’t get the services they need to prevent, test for and treat the disease,” said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

“On World Hepatitis Day, we’re calling for bold political leadership, with investments to match. We call on all countries to integrate services for hepatitis into benefit packages as part of their journey towards universal health coverage,” said the top UN health official.

By investing in diagnostic tests and medicines for treating hepatitis B and C now, countries can save lives and reduce costs related to long-term care of cirrhosis and liver cancer that result from untreated hepatitis.

According to WHO, some countries are already taking action. The Government of India, for example, has announced that it will offer free testing and treatment for both hepatitis B and C, as part of its universal health coverage plan. This has been facilitated through the reduction in prices of medicines. In India, a hepatitis C cure costs less than $40 and a year of hepatitis B treatment costs less than $30. At these prices, hepatitis C cure will result in healthcare cost savings within three years.

The Government of Pakistan has also been able to procure hepatitis C curative treatment at similarly low prices. Providing curative treatment to all those currently diagnosed with hepatitis C could also reduce healthcare costs in Pakistan within three years. Meanwhile, Pakistan is faced with one of the highest new annual infection rates of hepatitis C virus and is launching a new infection control and injection safety plan on the occasion of World Hepatitis Day to stop transmission.

World Hepatitis Day

WHO’s global hepatitis strategy, endorsed by all WHO Member States, aims to reduce new hepatitis infections by 90 per cent and deaths by 65 per cent between 2016 and 2030.

On the 2019 edition of World Hepatitis Day – the Day is marked on 29 July – WHO ins calling on all countries to “invest in eliminating hepatitis” through costing, budgeting and financing of elimination services within their universal health coverage plans.

While there has been broad support among WHO Member States in adopting the WHO hepatitis elimination strategy, with 124 out of 194 countries developing hepatitis plans, over 40 per cent of country plans lack dedicated budget lines to support elimination efforts.

There are five types of viral hepatitis infections – A, B, C, D and E. Over 95 per cent of deaths are caused by chronic hepatitis B and C infections, while hepatitis A and E rarely cause life-threatening illnesses. Hepatitis D is an additional infection occurring in people living with hepatitis B.

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Trump’s Pandemic Failure: A Missed Opportunity

Young people struggling in digital world, finds latest OECD PISA survey

Governments must take further action to boost job opportunities at an older age

EU Youth Conference in Riga concludes with recommendations for ministers

Human Rights breaches in Russia, Afghanistan and Burkina Faso

5G is here: PT Expo China 2019 will be held October 31 – November 3, in association with The European Sting

FROM THE FIELD: Crisis in Kassala FROM THE FIELD: Crisis in Kassala

Car-free day – and the other 364 days of the year

Oh, well, you are wrong, Google responds to the European Commission

As the Universal Declaration of Human Rights turns 70 – is it time for a new approach?

Humanitarian crisis in Yemen remains the worst in the world, warns UN

Google and Apple suddenly realise that doing business in EU is tough?

Parliament elects the von der Leyen Commission

David Attenborough’s worried about this ocean threat – and it’s not plastic

5 ways Coca-Cola is cleaning up its plastic footprint in Africa

The moment of truth for global energy transition is here

How the ‘California effect’ could shape a global approach to ethical AI

Somalia has ‘once in a generation’ gender equality opportunity – UN Women chief

‘No justification’ for attacks against civilians, UN envoy says on mounting cross-border violence in Gaza

The European Commission and EU consumer authorities publish final assessment of dialogue with Volkswagen

State aid: Commission approves €1.2 billion French “Fonds de solidarité” scheme for small enterprises in temporary financial difficulties due to coronavirus outbreak

Hurricane Dorian: Bahamas death toll expected to rise as thousands remain missing

The time for cities to get smart is now

Turning Europe into a giant wind farm could power the entire world

Taliban-led violence during recent Afghan polls leaves record high numbers of civilians dead – UN

‘Agile’, multilateral response vital to combat terrorism – UN chief Guterres

EU adopts rebalancing measures in reaction to US steel and aluminium tariffs

While EU Open Days 2013 discuss the 2020 strategy, Microsoft shares a glimpse of EU 2060

Fail fast, fail better: 3 ways companies can master innovation

Turkey caught in a vicious Syrian circle bringing terror and war at home

More than 3,400 classrooms damaged or destroyed by Cyclone Idai in Mozambique, says UN Children’s Fund

Coronavirus: Commission welcomes Parliament’s quick green light for proposed new resources to protect lives and livelihoods

We can’t rid Asia of natural disasters. But we can prepare for them

“InvestEU”: MEPs support new programme to boost financing for jobs and growth

Here are 3 alternative visions for the future of work

From diamonds to recycling: how blockchain can drive responsible and ethical businesses

UN Committee says Ebola in DR Congo still an international public health emergency

The 8 pieces of digital DNA we need to thrive in the AI age

EU Commission: a rise in wages and salaries may help create more jobs

ECB asks for more subsidies to banks

Main results of EU Environment Council, 25/06/2018

European Junior Enterprise Network – Ready to take the Step Into the Future?

Global Report on Food Crises reveals scope of food crises as COVID-19 poses new risks to vulnerable countries

Nairobi summit: Women’s empowerment a ‘game changer’ for sustainable development

Why will Paris upcoming “loose” climate change agreement work better than the previous ones?

Killings and violence targeting ethnic group in DR Congo ‘may amount to crimes against humanity’

Global leaders and companies pledge to reduce the gender pay gap by 2030

How to create a world where healthcare is a right, not a luxury

UN chief praises Malaysia’s death penalty repeal as ‘major step forward’

Environmental labelling, information and management schemes are central to the circular economy

South African women’s fury at gender-based attacks spills onto the streets

3 lessons from India in creating equal access to vaccines

A good night’s sleep ‘washes’ your brain, scientists say

Antisemitism, intolerance, can be unlearned, Guterres tells New York commemoration

In this ‘wildland’ farm in Britain, species thrive and yields are high

What do Europeans believe about the crisis and the possible way out?

This fascinating map shows how food moves around the US

Billions for sustainable investments – Germany’s plan for a green recovery

UN chief urges Hamas and Israel to ‘step back from the brink of another devastating conflict’ in Gaza

In New Zealand it takes less than a day to start a business

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s