I want to write about two topics this week—the newest approved hepatitis C drug (Vosevi) and World Hepatitis Day. Since World Hepatitis Day only occurs once a year, I will devote most of this week’s blog to it. I’ll briefly mention the new hepatitis C drug Vosevi, and write more about it next week.
This week, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the newest hepatitis C treatment, Vosevi (sofosbuvir/velpatasvir/voxilaprevir). Manufactured by Gilead Sciences, Vosevi is indicated for re-treatment of all genotypes in adults without cirrhosis or who have compensated cirrhosis (the milder form of the severe liver disease). For more information, read Hep’s treatment news.
World Hepatitis Day
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 325 million people have chronic hepatitis B or C, claiming approximately 1.34 million annual deaths. Roughly 71 million people have chronic hepatitis C infection in the world. WHO states that over 95 percent of people with hepatitis C can be completely cured within 2 to 3 months. However, only a tiny fraction of people have been tested for hepatitis C, let alone treated.
Although treating the disease and preventing the further transmission of hepatitis C is a critical task, we can’t do this without screening those at risk. We need to increase awareness.
To combat the problem of low awareness, the World Hepatitis Alliance initiated World Hepatitis Day. Launched in 2008, this annual event provides international focus for patient groups and people living with hepatitis B and C. World Hepatitis Day is an opportunity for interested groups and individuals to raise awareness and influence real change in disease prevention and access to testing and treatment.
World Hepatitis Day is on July 28th, which is this coming Friday. This year’s theme is Eliminate Hepatitis, coupled with the #SHOWYOURFACE campaign. Get involved, show your face, and help to eliminate hepatitis. For more information, check out World Hepatitis Day.