One of every 20 Britons of Pakistani origin suffers from hepatitis: NGO

Published July 19, 2014
A micrograph image of hepatitis virus. — File photo
A micrograph image of hepatitis virus. — File photo

ISLAMABAD: One out of every 20 Pakistanis living in the United Kingdom is suffering from hepatitis, says a non-governmental organisation.

According to a press release issued by the Maslaha NGO, hepatitis virus often silently attacks people showing no symptoms until the disease reaches an advanced stage.

The NGO, which has been working since 2007, says that with financial help from Barts Charity, it has launched its website understandhepbandc.org with films in English and Urdu as part of a campaign to encourage Pakistanis living in UK to understand, prevent and get tested for hepatitis B and C.

The films combine medical and cultural references to encourage early testing and decrease stigma.

Govt urged to make new hepatitis drug affordable

According to the NGO, among the British Pakistani community, hepatitis B is most commonly transferred at birth from infected mothers, and hepatitis C is most commonly transferred through poor medical and dental practices in Pakistan and other developing countries. This includes unsterilised injections, transfusions, vaccinations, haircuts and nose and ear piercing.

Published in Dawn, July 19th, 2014

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