Viral hepatitis is composed of several infectious diseases with common inflammation of the liver cells linked to viruses.
Hepatitis is silent (devoid of symptoms) and is a common and potentially serious disease, often diagnosed and treated too late.
A WHO study has shown that 325 million people worldwide live with chronic infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV).
Viral hepatitis caused 1.34 million deaths in 2015, a figure comparable to deaths from TB and HIV. But while the mortality attributable to tuberculosis and HIV is declining, that due to hepatitis is increasing.
There were approximately 1.75 million new cases of HCV infection in 2015, bringing the total number of people living with hepatitis C worldwide to 71 million.
Although overall hepatitis mortality is on the rise, the number of new HBV infections is declining due to an increase in the coverage of HBV vaccination among children. Worldwide, 84% of children born in 2015 had the 3 recommended doses of hepatitis B vaccine.
As the number of deaths caused by TB, HIV and Malaria decreases year by year, the number of deaths caused by hepatitis is constantly changing as you can note on the table below.