Global & Disaster Medicine

Viral hepatitis in the world

Global hepatitis report - infographics


World Hepatitis Day

WHO

Eliminate hepatitis: WHO

News release

New WHO data from 28 countries – representing approximately 70% of the global hepatitis burden – indicate that efforts to eliminate hepatitis are gaining momentum. Published to coincide with World Hepatitis Day, the data reveal that nearly all 28 countries have established high-level national hepatitis elimination committees (with plans and targets in place) and more than half have allocated dedicated funding for hepatitis responses.

On World Hepatitis Day, WHO is calling on countries to continue to translate their commitments into increased services to eliminate hepatitis. This week, WHO has also added a new generic treatment to its list of WHO-prequalified hepatitis C medicines to increase access to therapy, and is promoting prevention through injection safety: a key factor in reducing hepatitis B and C transmission.

From commitment to Action

“It is encouraging to see countries turning commitment into action to tackle hepatitis.” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “Identifying interventions that have a high impact is a key step towards eliminating this devastating disease. Many countries have succeeded in scaling-up the hepatitis B vaccination. Now we need to push harder to increase access to diagnosis and treatment.”

World Hepatitis Day 2017 is being commemorated under the theme “Eliminate Hepatitis” to mobilize intensified action towards the health targets in the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. In 2016, the World Health Assembly endorsed WHO’s first global health sectors strategy on viral hepatitis to help countries scale up their responses.

The new WHO data show that more than 86% of countries reviewed have set national hepatitis elimination targets and more than 70% have begun to develop national hepatitis plans to enable access to effective prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care services. Furthermore, nearly half of the countries surveyed are aiming for elimination through providing universal access to hepatitis treatment. But WHO is concerned that progress needs to speed up.

“The national response towards hepatitis elimination is gaining momentum. However, at best one in ten people who are living with hepatitis know they are infected and can access treatment. This is unacceptable,” said Dr Gottfried Hirnschall, WHO’s Director of the HIV Department and Global Hepatitis Programme.

“For hepatitis elimination to become a reality, countries need to accelerate their efforts and increase investments in life-saving care. There is simply no reason why many millions of people still have not been tested for hepatitis and cannot access the treatment for which they are in dire need.”

Viral hepatitis affected 325 million people worldwide in 2015, with 257 million people living with hepatitis B and 71 million people living with hepatitis C – the two main killers of the five types of hepatitis. Viral hepatitis caused 1.34 million deaths in 2015 – a figure close to the number of TB deaths and exceeding deaths linked to HIV.

Improving access to hepatitis C cure

Hepatitis C can be completely cured with direct acting antivirals (DAAs) within 3 months. However, as of 2015, only 7% of the 71 million people with chronic hepatitis C had access to treatment.

WHO is working to ensure that DAAs are affordable and accessible to those who need them. Prices have dropped dramatically in some countries (primarily in some high-burden, low-and lower middle income countries), facilitated by the introduction of generic versions of these medicines. The list of DAAs available to countries for treating hepatitis C is growing.

WHO has just prequalified the first generic version of one of these drugs: sofosbuvir. The average price of the required three-month treatment course of this generic is between US$260 and US$280, a small fraction of the original cost of the medicine when it first went on the market in 2013. WHO prequalification guarantees a product’s quality, safety and efficacy and means it can now be procured by the United Nations and financing agencies such as UNITAID, which now includes medicines for people living with HIV who also have hepatitis C in the portfolio of conditions it covers.

Global hepatitis report - infographics

Hepatitis B treatment

With high morbidity and mortality globally, there is great interest also in the development of new therapies for chronic hepatitis B virus infection. The most effective current hepatitis B treatment, tenofovir, (which is not curative and which in most cases needs to be taken for life), is available for as low as $48 per year in many low and middle income countries. There is also an urgent need to scale up access to hepatitis B testing.

Improving injection safety and infection prevention to reduce new cases of hepatitis B and C

Use of contaminated injection equipment in health-care settings accounts for a large number of new HCV and HBV infections worldwide, making injection safety an important strategy.Others include preventing transmission through invasive procedures, such as surgery and dental care; increasing hepatitis B vaccination rates and scaling up harm reduction programmes for people who inject drugs.

Today WHO is launching a range of new educational and communication tools to support a campaign entitled “Get the Point-Make smart injection choices” to improve injection safety in order to prevent hepatitis and other bloodborne infections in health-care settings.

World Hepatitis Summit

World Hepatitis Summit 2017, 1–3 November in São Paulo, Brazil, promises to be the largest global event to advance the viral hepatitis agenda, bringing together key players to accelerate the global response. Organised jointly by WHO, the World Hepatitis Alliance (WHA) and the Government of Brazil, the theme of the Summit is “Implementing the Global health sector strategy on viral hepatitis: towards the elimination of hepatitis as a public health threat”.

For more information, please contact:

Pru Smith
Communications Officer
Telephone: +41 22 791 4586
Mobile: +41 794 771 744
E-mail: smithp@who.int

Tunga (Oyuntungalag) Namjilsuren
Information Manager
WHO Department of HIV, Global Hepatitis Programme
Mobile: +41 79 203 3176
Email: namjilsurent@who.int


Ohio State Fair: 1 dead, 7 injured; the ‘worst tragedy in the history’ of the state fair

Columbus Dispatch

 


Saudi MOH: ‘1 New Confirmed Corona Cases Recorded’

26-7-2017-01.jpg


Cholera: Life and Death in yemen

WHO

The life and death struggle against cholera in Yemen

July 2017

Cholera continues to spread in Yemen, causing more than 390 000 suspected cases of the disease and more than 1800 deaths since 27 April.

WHO and its partners are responding to the cholera outbreak in Yemen, working closely with UNICEF, local health authorities and others to treat the sick and stop the spread of the disease.

Each of these cholera cases is a person with a family, a story, hopes and dreams. In the centres, where patients are treated, local health workers work long hours, often without pay, to fight off death and help their patients make a full recovery.

WHO/S. Hasan

Fatima Shooie sits between her 85-year-old mother and 22-year-old daughter who are both receiving treatment for cholera at the crowded 22 May Hospital in Sana’a.

“We have no money even for transportation to the hospital. My husband works as a street cleaner but he hasn’t received a salary for 8 months and he is our only breadwinner,” Fatima said. “I’m afraid that the disease will transmit to other family members.


WHO/S.Hasan

Dr Adel Al-Almani is the head of the diarrhoea treatment centre in Al-Sabeen Hospital in Sana’a. He and his team often work 18 hours a day to deal with the influx of patients.

More than 30 000 Yemeni health workers have not been paid in more than 10 months. Yet many, like Dr Al-Almani, continue to treat patients and save lives.


WHO/S. Hasan

Eight-year-old Mohannad has overcome cholera following 3 days of treatment in the diarrhoea treatment centre at Al-Sabeen Hospital in Sana’a. Mohannad lost his mother and sister when a bomb went off near their home in Hajjah. He and his father have since fled to Sana’a.

“Mohannad is all I have in this life after my wife and daughter died. When he was infected with cholera I was very anxious that he would have the same fate of his mother and sister,” said Mohannad’s father


WHO/S. Hasan

A health worker tends to Khadeeja Abdul-Kareem, 20. Khadeeja was forced to flee the conflict in Al-Waziya District, Taiz. Displaced from her home, she struggles to make ends meet – a situation compounded by her illness.


WHO/S. Hasan

It was a long and painful journey in search of treatment for Abdu Al-Nehmi, 53. The road from his village in Bani Matar District to Sana’a City was bumpy and the car broke down along the way. The whole time he was suffering from kidney pain in addition to severe diarrhoea and vomiting.

“There is no health centre in our area. We have to spend 2-3 hours to arrive at a proper health facility in Sana’a,” he said.

To date, WHO, UNICEF, and partners have supported the establishment of 3000 beds in 187 diarrhoea treatment centres and 834 fully operational oral rehydration therapy corners.


WHO/S. Hasan

Nabila, Fatima, Amal, Hayat and Hend are working as nurses in Azal Health Centre in Sana’a and have dedicated themselves to treating patients arriving with severe dehydration.

“Every day, we receive severe cases that come with complicated conditions, but we manage to save the lives of most of them. Sometimes, a new severe case arrives while we’re so busy treating another case,” said Nabila Al-Olofi, one of nurses working in the centre.

“Yes, we have no regular salaries as nurses, but saving lives is our biggest gain.”

WHO, together with UNICEF, is also delivering medical supplies and paying incentives, travel costs and overtime payments for health workers to enable them to continue to treat patients.


UNICEF Executive Director, Anthony Lake, WFP Executive Director, David Beasley and WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus visit Yeme

WHO

Joint WHO/UNICEF/WFP statement
26 July 2017

“As the heads of three United Nations agencies – UNICEF, the World Food Programme (WFP) and WHO – we have travelled together to Yemen to see for ourselves the scale of this humanitarian crisis and to step up our combined efforts to help the people of Yemen.

“This is the world’s worst cholera outbreak in the midst of the world’s largest humanitarian crisis. In the last 3 months alone, 400 000 cases of suspected cholera and nearly 1900 associated deaths have been recorded. Vital health, water and sanitation facilities have been crippled by more than 2 years of hostilities, and created the ideal conditions for diseases to spread.

“The country is on the brink of famine, with over 60 per cent of the population not knowing where their next meal will come from. Nearly 2 milllion Yemeni children are acutely malnourished. Malnutrition makes them more susceptible to cholera; diseases create more malnutrition. A vicious combination.

“At one hospital, we visited children who can barely gather the strength to breathe. We spoke with families overcome with sorrow for their ill loved ones and struggling to feed their families.

“And, as we drove through the city, we saw how vital infrastructure, such as health and water facilities, have been damaged or destroyed.

“Amid this chaos, some 16 000 community volunteers go house to house, providing families with information on how to protect themselves from diarrhea and cholera. Doctors, nurses and other essential health staff are working around the clock to save lives.

“More than 30 000 health workers haven’t been paid their salaries in more than 10 months, but many still report for duty. We have asked the Yemeni authorities to pay these health workers urgently because, without them, we fear that people who would otherwise have survived may die. As for our agencies, we will do our best to support these extremely dedicated health workers with incentives and stipends.

“We also saw the vital work being done by local authorities and NGOs, supported by international humanitarian agencies, including our own. We have set up more than 1000 diarrhoea treatment centres and oral rehydration corners. The delivery of food supplements, intravenous fluids and other medical supplies, including ambulances, is ongoing, as is the rebuilding of critical infrastructure – the rehabilitation of hospitals, district health centres and the water and sanitation network. We are working with the World Bank in an innovative partnership that responds to needs on the ground and helps maintain the local health institutions.

“But there is hope. More than 99 per cent of people who are sick with suspected cholera and who can access health services are now surviving. And the total number of children who will be afflicted with severe acute malnutrition this year is estimated at 385 000.

“However, the situation remains dire. Thousands are falling sick every day. Sustained efforts are required to stop the spread of disease. Nearly 80 percent of Yemen’s children need immediate humanitarian assistance.

“When we met with Yemeni leaders — in Aden and in Sana’a — we called on them to give humanitarian workers access to areas affected by fighting. And we urged them – more than anything – to find a peaceful political solution to the conflict.

“The Yemeni crisis requires an unprecedented response. Our 3 agencies have teamed up with the Yemeni authorities and other partners to coordinate our activities in new ways of working to save lives and to prepare for future emergencies.

“We now call on the international community to redouble its support for the people of Yemen. If we fail to do so, the catastrophe we have seen unfolding before our eyes will not only continue to claim lives but will scar future generations and the country for years to come.”


Yemen: From 27 April to 25 July 2017, 402,484 suspected cholera cases and 1,880 deaths (CFR: 0.5%) have been reported in 91.3% (21/23) of Yemen governorates, and 88.9% (296/333) of the districts.

WHO

A physician checking a patient for dehydration    Person washing hands over a bucket of water

 


Texas: First human case of indigenous Zika Virus infection

Texas Health

 


Overnight wildfires force mass evacuations in southern France (at least 10 000)

BBC

 


The Mumbai police on Wednesday arrested a man affiliated with a local political party, accusing him of making illegal alterations to the ground floor of a five-story building that caused it to collapse a day earlier, killing at least 17 people and injuring many others.

NY Times

“…..The building’s collapse is reflective of a sadly familiar phenomenon in India. A severe housing shortage, lax regulation and political corruption have resulted in too many people crowded into old, weak and substandard structures. Politically connected people such as contractors and developers often circumvent safety rules with impunity until disaster strikes…..”

 


Categories

Recent Posts

Archives

Admin