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May 19, 2008, will be the first ever global World Hepatitis Day (WHD). The international campaign platform for WHD 2008 is "Am I Number 12?" to communicate the current statistic that one in 12 people worldwide has viral hepatitis B or C and also to encourage people to question themselves and get tested.
Students and staff from the Faculty of Medicine at Memorial University will be involved in marking the WHD locally. Information booths will be set up in the lobby of the Faculty of Medicine next to Tim Hortons from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on Friday May 16, 2008, and at the Avalon Mall outside the Gap from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday May 20 to raise awareness for the prevalence of hepatitis B and C infections, known risk factors that are associated with acquisition of these viruses as well as the importance of being tested.
Hepatitis B virus is spread by bodily fluids and can be transmitted sexually as well as from mother to baby. Hepatitis C (HCV) is spread by blood with the majority of new infections being due to sharing of needles and drug paraphernalia between injecting drug users, although intranasal cocaine use and unsafe tattooing techniques have been increasingly recognized as risk factors for HCV transmission. For more information on hepatitis B and C, please visit the
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