World Hepatitis Alliance Warns that Stigma is a Major Threat to New Initiative Against Hepatitis Epidemic
by Raul Bender
Switzerland, Geneva. Thursday 28th July, 2011 – On World Hepatitis Day the World Hepatitis Alliance is warning governments that, unless they also tackle stigma and discrimination, important new action to improve and save millions of lives will be wasted.
The warning from the patient community comes one year after the agreement of an historic World Health Organization (WHO) resolution, which for the first time described what is expected of governments to deliver improvements in awareness, surveillance, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of viral hepatitis. The resolution was passed just weeks after the Alliance published research that found only a few - less than one third - of governments funded action to reduce the stigmatisation of, and discrimination against, people living with hepatitis B or C1.