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World Hepatitis Day To Focus On Prevention
July 28, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 28, 2015
Contact: Communications Office
WORLD HEPATITIS DAY TO FOCUS ON PREVENTION
TALLAHASSEE—The Florida Department of Health recognizes World Hepatitis Day as an opportunity to encourage prevention for all residents. In 2010, the World Health Organization (WHO) made World Hepatitis Day only the fourth official disease-specific world health day, and designated July 28th for the observance. The 2015 theme is “Prevent Hepatitis: It’s up to you,” in order to promote all people to know their status and prevent infection.
“Public health recognizes that an ounce of prevention is worth far more than a pound of cure,” said State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health Dr. John Armstrong. “Know your hepatitis status—talk with your healthcare professional about testing and vaccination.”
Chronic hepatitis B or C can go undetected for decades. Most people are unaware of their status because they have no symptoms. Many are not even aware of the factors that put them at risk, such as:
- Having a blood transfusion before 1992;
- Sharing needles for tattooing, piercing or injecting drugs (even once);
- Being on long-term hemodialysis;
- Sharing personal items like razors, tooth brushes or nail clippers; and
- Not using a condom when having sex.
The department launched a webpage in June to provide educational materials regarding hepatitis C, which can be accessed here: http://www.floridahealth.gov/diseases-and-conditions/hepatitis/hepatitis-c.html. Additionally, residents can locate a support group hosted by various county health departments and community partners for those living with or supporting a loved one with hepatitis. The department encourages Florida residents to learn about hepatitis C and take the proper precautions to protect themselves.
The department works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.