Silent Killer: Hepatitis Viruses Kill 3,500 Lives Daily – WHO

Hepatitis viruses have been cast as a silent but deadly enemy, which claims the lives of tens of thousands people in the world every day. Based on what is given by the World Health Organization or WHO, at least 3,500 people lose their lives every day because of the hepatitis infections’ ramifications. This disquieting figure tells us about the importance of increased awareness and measures for prevention and the need to test and treat so that the subtle effects of viral hepatitis on our global society can be tackled.

Understanding Hepatitis: A Silent Epidemic

One of the common diseases, related to the organ dysfunction is hepatitis, which is often triggered by the viral infections including hepatitis A, B, C, D, and E viruses. On the one hand, having acute hepatitis can be a little better since it may be good to think this problem will easily resolve, however, the problem may become more severe (chronic hepatitis) and lead to potentially fatal conditions like liver cirrhosis, liver failure or hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer). Hepatitis is a subcategory of viruses, which transmit in various ways such as via contaminated foods or waters, unsafe injection practices, sexual visits, and mother-to-child transmission.

Although we regard hepatitis as a disease with substantial health implications, it is sometimes called the “silent epidemic” because its early stages do not have pronounced symptoms. Many are not precisely aware that they are infected, which means that the virus may work through and eventually damage the liver silently over time. As a consequence, hepatitis episodes are not diagnosed and treated at early stages due to which cases with advanced level are spread which in turn increase the morbidity and mortality rates.

The Global Impact: A Leading Cause of Death and Disability

Hepatitis strains of viruses present a big problem in global healthcare with their appalling prevalence and heavy disease generation. As per what WHO has reported, viral hepatitis is accountable for almost 1.34 million fatalities annually being one of the short stoppings of mortality world-wide. Besides, Hepatitis viral infections in chronic state made a big strokes on the morbidity and disability, this consequently led to a reduction of quality of life and as a result a big economic and social burden on the patients and their families.

Hepatitis viruses come to affect even more people than others, namely, citizens that live in either so-called low- and middle-income countries, the disadvantaged groups and people without access to the health-care services. It is important to mention that the inadequacy of sanitation, unhygienic practices, and limited access to clean water, as well as the absence or poor coverage of vaccination programs play a significant role in the high incidence of the hepatitis diseases in these groups of population.

Prevention Strategies: Key to Combatting Hepatitis Epidemic

Prevention, which involves implementing current programs, is an integral and the most important aspect of combating this hepatitis problem and its adverse effects on public health. Vaccination with hepatitis A and B viral vaccines is an importation measure for individuals who are at high-risk,including healthcare staffers, travellers to endemic regions and those with the specific medical condition. However, apart from ensuring that the vaccination priority groups receive vaccines, education and promotion of safe injection practices, providing access to clean water and sanitation facilities and implementing harm reduction programs for at-risk populations such as people who inject drugs are equally important strategic measures to preventing hepatitis spread.

Identifying and treating hepatitis at an early age with rigorous medications are also critical for the prevention of the disease severity and thus complications. The programs of screening, treatment, and linkage to care can enable the targeting the of people to hepatitis and to give the patients the appropriate treatment and support. Suppressing replication of chronic HBV and HCV viruses, treatment of infections shows antiviral therapies to be highly effective in achieving reduction in the damage to liver, and preventing complications as well. The early stage diagnosis and treatment initiation can be important here as well.

Global Response: Strengthening Efforts to Eliminate Hepatitis

In 2016, the WHO took up the Global Health Sector Strategy on Implementing Viral Hepatitis Elimination as a public threat by 2030, as one of its targets. This plan includes the main objectives as follows: informing on hepatitis causes, symptoms, and ways to prevention; increasing the access to testing, treatment and services; and diminishing the transmission of the viruses. Therefore, to meet these challenging targets requires the concerted collaboration of the governments, international institutions, non-governmental organizations and the private sector in which they channels their resources, implement evidence-based interventions and look into the social determinants of health that lead to disparities in hepatitis.


To summarize, the hepatitis viruses are viriles though not expressible, they drain lives day by day and inflict enormous suffering and incapacitation. Engaging in raising awareness creates intensified prevention strategies. We can also expand access to screening and treatment services and enhance global partnerships, thus eradicating hepatitis as a public health issue. In such a way we will develop a healthier living for all of us.