MOPH and Partners Mark World Hepatitis Day

​The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) and its partners mark World Hepatitis Day which falls on 28 July 2020, under the theme “Hepatitis-free future” with a strong focus on preventing hepatitis B among mothers and newborns.

​​World Hepatitis Day is an opportunity to reinforce efforts to implement the first global strategy developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) on viral hepatitis for 2016-2021 and to help countries achieve the ultimate goal of eliminating hepatitis.

The fight against hepatitis is one of the priorities of the healthcare system in Qatar considering the severe complications that result from infection such as cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer which are difficult to treat and constitute a major burden for healthcare system.

Qatar is pursuing a strategic approach to controlling and eliminating viral hepatitis through joint efforts by the MoPH, Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC), Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC), Qatar Red Crescent, the private sector and many local and international partners.

The MoPH, HMC, the PHCC and national partners are keen to organize awareness campaigns on the disease and carry out a number of early screening campaigns for hepatitis C which resulted in a significant decrease in the incidence rate at 0.8% among the entire population and 0.25% among Qataris. According to the World Health Organization, Qatar is classified as a low burden of hepatitis B, with a prevalence rate of less than 2%.

In the event that any cases are tested positive, they are referred to the HMC, where they are treated with the latest and most effective medical drugs for hepatitis C, known as “Direct antiviral drugs”, which is provided by Qatar free of charge to all citizens and residents through HMC’s liver diseases department, in co-operation with the Qatar Red Crescent, the private sector and many partners in the country. So far, more than 4,000 patients have been treated at HMC and very high cure rates have been achieved.

The national working group for hepatitis C, which includes all the effective partners in combating the disease in Qatar, conducted many scientific research in co-operation with distinguished international institutions and was published in the most prestigious international scientific journals and presented in a number of international conferences.

Qatar has received international acclaim through the scientific reports presented at the World Hepatitis Summit held in Brazil early Nov. 2017, which indicated that Qatar is among the nine countries in the world that is on the right path to eliminate the hepatitis C virus by 2030.

Qatar, in co-operation with the WHO, set the strategic framework to combat hepatitis in the country for the period 2018-2022, and the framework includes five strategic guidelines covering activities that enhance co-ordination efforts between different sectors, and ensure the provision of a high level of quality of epidemiological information on the disease, providing all preventive and curative hepatitis services and achieving comprehensive coverage of these services as well as providing the necessary resources.

The strategic framework to combat hepatitis focuses on the implementation of the goals related to the National Health Strategy 2018-2022 and the Public Health Strategy 2017-2022, and the strategic framework has been adopted by officials of the national program to fight hepatitis.

 

Source: Ministry of Public Health