Through its collaboration with the World Hepatitis Alliance (WHA), a non-governmental organization representing more than 200 hepatitis B and C patient groups around the world, the KRCS is leading local advocacy and awareness activities.
¡°Chronic viral hepatitis is a serious health problem in Kuwait with over 5% of people estimated to be infected. This startling fact, coupled with the stigma associated with transmission of the disease, means that many individuals are afraid to get tested for fear of a positive diagnosis,¡± said Dr. Fuad Al Ali.
¡°In fact, it is estimated that in Kuwait more than 60% are unaware that they are infected. While there is no permanent cure for viral hepatitis B, we can assure that there are effective treatments that can manage the disease.¡± He added.
To support educational and awareness efforts, the KRCS, a voluntary humanitarian organization, has joined forces with the WHA to make even greater contributions towards the prevention and management of viral hepatitis. In early 2009, KRCS had announced its sponsorship of the B Aware campaign in Kuwait, a national effort aimed at raising awareness of hepatitis B and helping those at risk to self-identify and get tested, vaccinated, and if necessary, treated.
Mr. Hilal Al Sayer, KRCS Vice President, said:
¡°B-Aware is our contribution to the massive global efforts of advocacy groups and voluntary organizations to stop the spread of the disease and help save lives. In Kuwait we will continue our efforts to alert the population about this silent scourge through various awareness campaigns.¡±
B-Aware initiatives in Kuwait have so far included community events, press conferences, and intense media outreach which has resulted, so far, in more than 5 millions impressions via TV, radio, print and online coverage.
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