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National Hispanic Hepatitis Awareness Day
National Hispanic Hep Awareness Day is held on May 15. It is the one day we set aside to push forward with the commitment to bring awareness of hepatitis and engage Hispanic communities in a strong and fruitful response to a preventable viral hepatitis epidemic.
In 2009, Latinos, the fastest-growing minority population in the US, received a diagnosis of hepatitis A twice as often as non-Hispanic whites. As compared to non-Hispanic whites in the same age group, Latinos age 40 and over are 30% more likely to contract hepatitis B. Although Latinos are diagnosed less frequently with hepatitis C than non-Hispanic whites (0.15 cases per 100,000 for Latinos versus 0.22 per 100,000 for non-Hispanic whites), viral hepatitis is twice as often a cause of death for Latinos than it is for whites and Latinos have higher prevalence rates of hepatitis C.
Because of social and economic issues, including the lack of access to care, Latinos also have a more rapid build-up of liver scarring than non-Hispanic whites. For example, Puerto Ricans with hepatitis C advance towards cirrhosis at a younger age than other populations.
Stay tuned for National Hispanic Hep Awareness Day event announcements.
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