July 28, 2014
Hepatitis B tests urged
The Hepatitis Foundation is encouraging Maori over 25 to get tested for Hepatitis B.
Chief executive John Hornell says vaccination programmes have largely broken the cycle of the disease for younger people, but many older people don’t know they are carrying it in their blood.
They may not show obvious symptoms, but they are at high risk of getting liver cancer and other conditions if they don’t get treated.
He says Maori, Pacific Island an Asian people are at higher risk because it is easily passed on in social gatherings.
"Hepatitis B has nothing to do with hygiene. If you happen to have no protection against hepatitis B and you come into contact with someone, you run a risk of being infected with it. And it’s simple things like sharing the same razor, sharing a comb," he says.
Mr Hornell says there are now extremely effective treatments that will keep Hepatitis B and C under control.
FOR THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH JOHN HORNELL CLICK ON THE LINK
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