WHD: Coalition for Global Hepatitis Elimination and Local Partners in 30 Countries Launch National Hepatitis Elimination Profiles (N-HEP)
– National Hepatitis Elimination Profiles catalyze progress towards elimination -
Atlanta, GA., July 28, 2021 – On World Hepatitis Day, the Coalition for Global Hepatitis Elimination and local partners launch a new initiative to develop National Hepatitis Elimination Profiles for 30 countries. The profiles report progress toward hepatitis elimination in the countries, and reveal strengths and limitations in national plans, policies and programs necessary for equitable access to hepatitis prevention, testing, and treatment. With this information in hand, the Coalition and local partners to advocate for the feasible next steps to keep countries on track to eliminate hepatitis.
The National Hepatitis Elimination profiles will bring together key data on the burden of disease, status of program delivery, and key policies. The profiles will also point to recent advances, key challenges, innovations, and future considerations for each country. The full set of indicators explored in the profiles is available here. The NHEPs build on the Coalition’s country data dashboards that exist for over 190+ countries gathered from systematic reviews of scientific publications, WHO reports and other credible global sources. All data presented in the profiles are reviewed and validated by local stakeholders. The profiles are dynamic and will continue to be updated as new information is shared. Profiles are available in languages appropriate to the country, i.e. in Spanish or Portuguese.
To kick-off the initiative, the Coalition released profiles for six countries in the Americas, including Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Peru, and the United States. In addition to Ministries of Health and civil society, the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) and the Latin American Association for the Study of the Liver (ALEH) were critical partners in the development of these early profiles. These profiles reveal progress and remaining barriers to elimination in the Americas. Key takeaways include:
- All countries, except Peru, have elimination goals for hepatitis C. Mexico has a new HCV elimination plan now targeting improvements in HCV treatment for persons living with HIV.
- Brazil committed early to hepatitis elimination and new hepatitis infections and hepatitis-related deaths appear to be on the decline, although these trends must be validated after the pandemic. In contrast, new cases of HCV infection are rising dramatically in the United States as a result of increases in injection drug use and poor access to prevention services.
- As revealed in the profiles, Canada provides exemplary access to HCV prevention services.
- Goals for HBV mother to child transmission exist in all countries but Mexico. Argentina reported the highest rate (82%) of hepatitis B vaccination for newborns to prevent mother to child transmission of HBV. Canada is the only country to not have a national hepatitis B vaccine policy for newborns.
- All countries can improve access to hepatitis B and C treatment by removing barriers for patients.
- Strategic information, including establishing national registries or other ways for tracking the number of persons tested and treated must be strengthened for hepatitis B and C in all countries.
“The National Hepatitis Elimination Profiles are a catalytic force. First, development of a NHEP brings local stakeholders together to forge a common understanding of their country’s hepatitis burden and the strengths and challenges in preventing new infections and life threatening disease. Secondly, NHEPs spark the coalition’s call for countries to build on their successes, overcome challenges and advance progress toward hepatitis elimination.” says Dr. John W. Ward, Director of the Coalition for Global Hepatitis Elimination.
By early 2022, the Coalition will develop profiles for at least an additional 25 high-burden countries across the world. All profiles will be available for download on the Coalition’s website.
Funding for the National Hepatitis Elimination Profiles is provided by Gilead Sciences. The Coalition retained final control over the Profiles.
Access the profiles at: https://www.globalhep.org/national-hepatitis-elimination-profiles
World Hepatitis Day
World Hepatitis Day is commemorated each year on 28 July to enhance awareness of viral hepatitis, an inflammation of the liver that causes a range of health problems, including liver cancer. There are five main strains of the hepatitis virus – A, B, C, D and E. Together, hepatitis B (HBV) and C (HCV) are the most common, with 354 million people living with HBV or HCV globally and more than 1.3 million lives lost each year. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, viral hepatitis continues to claim thousands of lives every day. See more at https://www.who.int/campaigns/world-hepatitis-day/2020.
Coalition for Global Hepatitis Elimination
With the availability of reliable tests, highly protective hepatitis B vaccines, effective HBV medications, and curative HCV therapies in hand, in 2016, the WHO set targets for HBV and HCV elimination by 2030. The Coalition for Global Hepatitis Elimination (CGHE) was launched at The Task Force for Global Health in July 2019 to accelerate progress toward these goals. Modelled after other disease elimination initiatives managed by the Task Force, CGHE aims to strengthen the capacity of national and subnational hepatitis elimination programs through advocacy, technical assistance, knowledge generation, and dissemination among partners united in a community of practice. Find out more at www.globalhep.org.
Coalition for Global Hepatitis Elimination
The Task Force for Global Health
globalhep [at] taskforce.org
330 Ponce de Leon Ave
Decatur, GA 30030