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ILBS, Delhi Metro join hands for country-wide hepatitis awareness campaign

PTI Nov 27, 2018

A campaign that seeks to build a country-wide awareness on the menace of diseases like viral hepatitis was launched on November 26, officials said.

City-based Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS) and the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) have joined hands for this initiative which is also being supported by the Airports Authority of India (AAI). "Empowering People Against Hepatitis: The Empathy Campaign, aimed at spreading pan-India awareness on the menace of viral hepatitis B and C, was formally launched at an event held at Metro Bhawan," a DMRC official said.

"Millions of people in India are tested positive for hepatitis. They are denied opportunities due to the social stigma associated with this health condition. This initiative is meant to empower them and raise awareness on hepatitis," said Shiv Kumar Sarin, Senior Professor, Hepatology and Director, ILBS.

In his keynote address, Kumar also urged the DMRC employees to undergo tests and take necessary precautions to avoid hepatitis. Managing Director of DMRC Mangu Singh extended the Delhi Metro's complete support to the initiative and said similar awareness and health-check camps would be organised at metro depots and residential colonies of employees.

The DMRC staff also took a pledge for the cause and ILBS medical and para medical staff conducted screening and vaccination for all the volunteers. More than 250 DMRC staff got screened and vaccinated for hepatitis B and C in the health-check camp held at Metro Bhawan soon after the pledge ceremony, the DMRC said in a statement.

"About 60 million Indians are inflicted with hepatitis B and C virus infections which are responsible for liver cirrhosis and cancer. Majority of those harbouring the infection are undiagnosed and unaware of their medical status. And, it is to address this problem, the ILBS has undertaken a comprehensive programme," it said.

The campaign seeks to generate awareness on hepatitis B and hepatitis C across India through multi-pronged advocacy strategies for improving healthcare and developing and promoting positive behaviours at individual, community and societal levels for infected individuals.

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