May is Hepatitis Awareness Month (HAM) and May 19th is Hepatitis Testing Day. These recognition opportunities aim to shed light on the hidden epidemic of viral hepatitis in this country and encourage people to get tested, get vaccinated, and seek treatment. Please use the sample social media in this toolkit to spread awareness about vaccines, testing, and treatment of viral hepatitis. You can download this toolkit here, and the infographics here.
Millions of people in the U.S. are living with viral hepatitis, and thousands of new cases are reported every year. With proper treatment, Hepatitis C is curable and Hepatitis B is manageable , but people must first be diagnosed in order to access available lifesaving care. According to the CDC, 66% of people with Hepatitis B and 40% of people with Hepatitis C are unaware of their infections, putting them at risk for serious and potentially fatal health problems, including liver cancer. Since 2012, more people have died from Hepatitis C than 60 other reportable infectious diseases combined, including HIV, pneumonia, and tuberculosis. Approximately 15-25% of people with chronic Hepatitis B develop serious liver problems, including liver damage, cirrhosis, liver failure, and cancer.
These diseases disproportionately impact vulnerable communities and communities of color. Rates of infection and serious health outcomes, including death, are highest among Asian American and Pacific Islanders, American Indians/Alaska Natives, non-Hispanic Black people, people who are incarcerated, people who inject drugs, people living with HIV, people experiencing homelessness, and adults over age 60 with risk factors.
Spreading awareness about the importance of getting tested, getting vaccinated, and seeking treatment during Hepatitis Awareness Month is critical to eliminating viral hepatitis.
This month encourages us all to renew our commitment to improving the health of people living with viral hepatitis in the United States. Let’s work together to reduce the impact of viral hepatitis on individuals and communities and reduce the long-term economic costs of undiagnosed and untreated viral hepatitis.
About viral hepatitis:
- Viral hepatitis is a hidden epidemic impacting millions across the US. This #HepatitisAwarenessMonth, let’s recommit to spreading awareness about the importance of getting tested, getting vaccinated, and seeking treatment for viral hepatitis. #HepAware23 https://hepvu.org/hepatitis-awareness-month-2023/
- Millions of Americans are living with #HepC—but many don’t know they have it. As a result, this curable disease is left untreated, leading to life-threatening health problems. Get vaccinated, get tested, and get treated. #HepatitisAwarenessMonth
- Highly effective vaccines can prevent Hepatitis B infection. This #HepatitisAwarenessMonth, encourage your community to get vaccinated to protect against #HepB
- Untreated cases of #HepB and #HepC are the leading causes of liver cancer in the U.S. This #HepatitisAwarenessMonth, we can save lives by working together to spread awareness about vaccines, testing, and treatment of viral hepatitis. https://hepvu.org/
- Viral hepatitis is a manageable or curable condition if people know their status but because the disease is often asymptomatic, many people don’t. We can eliminate this growing epidemic by increasing resources to get people vaccinated, tested, and treated. #HepAware23
- Native people, people of color, people who inject drugs, people living with HIV, people experiencing homelessness, and baby boomers are more likely to have viral hepatitis. As we work to eliminate viral hepatitis, we must focus on supporting every community. #HepAware23
- Despite making up just 5% of the U.S. population, AAPI people account for over half of #HepB cases. During #HepatitisAwarenessMonth & #AAPIHeritageMonth, let’s work to eliminate the barriers preventing AAPI communities from getting vaccinated, tested, and treated for #HepB.
National Hispanic Hepatitis Awareness Day, MAY 15:
- Hispanic/Latinx people in the U.S. are disproportionately impacted by viral hepatitis. On National Hispanic Hepatitis Awareness Day, let’s recommit to health equity and eliminating viral hepatitis in all communities.
Hepatitis Testing Day, MAY 19:
- Today is #HepatitisTestingDay. Have you been tested for #HepB? The @CDChep recommends #HepB testing for ALL adults 18+ at least once in their lifetime and for all pregnant women during each pregnancy. Find a testing site today: https://hepvu.org/services/#/
- Universal screening for Hepatitis C saves lives. #HepatitisTestingDay is a great day to get tested for #HepC. Learn how to get tested for viral hepatitis: https://hepvu.org/services/#/