Islamabad, 28 July 2022 (TDI): Chairman National Assembly Standing Committee on National Health Regulation and Coordination, Senator Dr. Hamayun Mohmand, addressed the awareness seminar on World Hepatitis Day on Thursday.

Maroof International Hospital organized the seminar.

World Hepatitis Day
CEO of Maroof Hospital, Ch. Haroon Naseer presents a bouquet to Senator Mohammad Humayun Mohmand
Remarks of the speakers: 

Senator Mohmand remarked that around 15 million Pakistanis are suffering from Hepatitis B and C, making it the biggest killer among communicable diseases in the country.

The CEO of Maroof International Hospital, Haroon Naseer, said that Hepatitis A and E are transmitted through contaminated food or water. In contrast, Hepatitis B and C are transmitted through infected blood and body fluids.

He offered to collaborate with the government in the health sector in the vaccination process. He said that around 200,000 new patients develop hepatitis yearly, and 10% to 40% of people with chronic infection may develop cirrhosis and potentially liver cancer.

Consultant Gastroenterologist of Maroof Int’l Hospital, Dr. Ayesha Waqar, talked about the various diagnostic tests available for the screening of hepatitis, different modes of spread of infection, complications associated with this disease, and particularly stressed the prevention of the spread of Hepatitis.

Gastroenterologist and Hepatologist, Dr. Usman Aftab Ahmad, said that Hepatitis B and C are silent killers.

This year the day emphasizes the urgency of testing, screening, and early treatment.

“We as a community need to take collective responsibility and take initiative,” he said.

“We need to educate people and end the discrimination of hepatitis patients so that they can come forward and seek help. Importance has to be given to vaccination so that we protect our future and our loved ones,” he added.

He said health experts should raise awareness on avoiding unsafe injection practices, using un-screened blood for transfusions, and using unsterilized equipment for dental or surgical procedures to prevent Hepatitis B and C.

Other speakers and attendees:

Dr. Muhammad Sartaj, First Secretary of UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), and Lt. Col. Dr. Shahid Rasheed from Mari Petroleum also spoke about the treatment and prevention aspects of the disease.

Representatives from WHO, UNICEF, IOM, Australian High Commission, Gerrys, and other healthcare sectors also attended the seminar.