FG Reveals 19 Million Nigerians Affected by Hepatitis

According to Dr Adebobola Bashorun, the National Coordinator of National Coordinator of National AIDS and STDs Control Programme (NASCP), around 19 million Nigerians are currently affected by hepatitis.

He made this statement during a briefing in Abuja, organized by the Federal Ministry of Health to mark World Hepatitis Day with the theme “One life, one liver.” Dr Bashorun also mentioned that only 60 percent of Nigerians are aware of hepatitis, and less than 50 percent know their hepatitis status.

He said: “That is why we are trying to create awareness and demand for testing. So, apart from getting information about hepatitis, you should also know your hepatitis status.”

Dr Bashorun emphasized that hepatitis vaccination is part of the routine immunization schedule for children, and there are vaccines available to prevent hepatitis B in adults as well. He also assured federal government has also formulated a National Strategic Framework for Viral Hepatitis for the period from 2022 to 2026.

Dr Olufunso Adebiyi, the Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Health, emphasized that viral hepatitis, particularly hepatitis B and hepatitis C, continue to pose significant public health risks due to person-to-person transmission. This transmission is exacerbated by limited knowledge among healthcare providers and low awareness among the general population.

Dr Morenike Alex-Okoh, representing Dr Adebiyi, added that these factors contribute to stigmatization, delayed diagnosis, and higher mortality rates.

Categories: News