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ECUO, News

Mortality from hepatitis breaks records due to absence of access to treatment

July 28, 2017

In 2015, viral hepatitis caused the death of 1 million 340 thousand people around the world. Such data are published in the report of the World Health Organization, during the International Congress on diseases of the liver ILC 2017 held in Amsterdam.

One of the causes of high mortality is the inaccessibility of treatment, first and foremost for vulnerable groups of the population. In this regard, ECUO’s priority is to strengthen the region of Eastern Europe and Central Asia advocacy programs to remove barriers in the treatment of HIV, TB, and hepatitis.

“Hepatitis is one of the main threats, especially for the health of HIV-infected people. For our region, it is one of the acutest problems, besides there are no exact statistics on the incidence in the countries, and there is no reliable data on the number of people who need treatment. We are talking about tens of millions of citizens of Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Also, as of today the treatment for hepatitis C is still quite expensive. Drug prices are declining, new drugs are appearing, but unfortunately, treatment remains unavailable, especially for the majority of vulnerable groups of the population: injecting drug users, sex workers, and MSM. These key groups are dying from HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and hepatitis.

Therefore, for us, as an organization that unites communities of people living with HIV, it is crucially important to ensure access to hepatitis treatment for all persons in need. One of our short-term priorities is to join the advocacy efforts of the communities to remove obstacles in the treatment of HIV, TB, and hepatitis,”- says President of ECUO, Vladimir Zhovtyak.

According to WHO estimates, in 2015, the number of people with chronic hepatitis around the world exceeded 328 million. And only 15% of patients have access to treatment.

Until 2021, the World Health Organization is implementing a Global Strategy aimed at reducing new cases of hepatitis infection by 90% and deaths by 65%.

On July 28 many countries hold the World Hepatitis Day.


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