A Physician Specialist and Hepathologist at the Tamale Teaching Hospital, Dr Salimatu Asam Moro has called on Ghanaians particularly pregnant women to do hepatitis “B” screening in order to know their status. She says, babies born to mothers with hepatitis “B” have a chance of developing chronic hepatitis “B” if not properly treated. According to her, it is important that pregnant women know their status to prevent passing the virus onto their newborn baby during delivery.
Dr. Asam Moro gave the advice in an earlier interview with Zaa news. She further articulates that, knowing your status will ensure that hepatitis “B” transmission to a baby is prevented by taking the right steps based on blood test results and to make arrangements to have the proper medications so as to prevent the baby from being infected.
Hepatitis “B” virus infection posed a significant global health problem with an estimated 350- 400 million people worldwide are chronically infected. According to a 2019 World Health Organization (WHO) global report, 296 million people live with chronic hepatitis B infection, 58 million persons live with hepatitis C, and 1.5 million new infections each year, with 820, 000 hepatitis B-related deaths. Forty two per cent of children globally have access to the birth dose of the hepatitis B vaccine.
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization (WHO) has raised alarm over a new outbreak of “unexplained acute hepatitis infections” affecting children across the world. This year, the WHO highlights the need to bring hepatitis care closer to primary health facilities and communities so that people can have better access to treatment and care, no matter what type of hepatitis they may have.
The Hepathologist indicates that most infected persons may exhibit symptoms such as body aches, fatigue, abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting, acute liver failure among others. Dr Asam Moro has however urged Ghanaians not to wait but get tested for hepatitis to know their status for early treatment. The world marks World Hepatitis Day on 28 July every year, to raise awareness of this “silent killer”.
Source: zaanradio.com –Tamale.