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Published Date: 2017-07-05 11:50:38

Subject: PRO/EDR> Hepatitis B - Australia: (NS)

Archive Number: 20170705.5152458


A ProMED-mail post


ProMED-mail is a program of the

International Society for Infectious Diseases


Date: Tue 4 Jul 2017 12:52am

Source: Fairfield Advance [edited]


The 2016 South Western Sydney Local Health District community profile estimates 17 000 people in southwestern Sydney live with hepatitis B and C. There are 98 hepatitis B notifications per 100 000 residents in Fairfield, compared with on average 31 per 100 000 across NSW.

If left unmanaged and untreated, chronic hepatitis B (and C) can cause progressive liver disease, cirrhosis and liver cancer. "Although there is no evidence indicating an epidemic in the Fairfield area, anyone who thinks they may have hepatitis B (or C) is encouraged to see their GP and get a blood test," a SWSLHD spokeswoman said.

Hepatitis can be transmitted through the sharing of injecting equipment, tattooing and piercings. About 75 percent of southwest Sydney residents living with chronic hepatitis B were born in countries with high hepatitis B prevalence. Those countries include Vietnam, China, Cambodia, the Philippines and Fiji. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people also have a higher prevalence.

"The district provides training and support to GPs on both hepatitis B (and C) including additional training for Vietnamese and Arabic speaking GPs to support testing and treatment in language," the spokeswoman said. "Hepatitis B and C Health Pathways have also been developed in collaboration with the South Western Sydney Primary Health Network to support GPs."

"Hepatitis B is both a blood borne and sexually transmissible infection," the spokeswoman said. "The main routes of transmission include from mother-to-child at or around birth, during unprotected sex, and through sharing of injecting equipment." The spokeswoman said vaccination, practicing safe sex, taking care with tattoos and piercings and not sharing needles and injecting equipment were preventive measures against hepatitis.

Hepatitis prevention

- Get vaccinated against hepatitis B

- Practice safe sex

- Never share needles, syringes and other injecting equipment and don't share toothbrushes, razors or other personal care items

- Take care with tattoos and piercings -- use a professional business with strict sterilization practices

[Byline: Eliza Barr]


Communicated by:

ProMED-mail from HealthMap Alerts


[The individuals with chronic hepatitis B probably acquired it in their home countries from neonatal transmission but do represent a reservoir for transmission to susceptible people. The difference between Fairfield and NSW for hepatitis prevalence likely is related to differences in the population demographics.

Fairfield is a western suburb of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Fairfield is located 29 kilometers [18.01 miles] west of the Sydney central business district. - Mod.LL

A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/284.]

See Also



Hepatitis B & C - Australia: (NS) possible dental exposure, alert 20150704.3480652



Hepatitis B & C - Australia: (AC) 20141214.3029470

Hepatitis B & C - Australia: (AC) 

Archive Number: 20141214.3029470


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