Countries made a historic commitment to eliminate viral hepatitis by 2030 at the 2016 World Health Assembly.
Since then, the Sustainable Development Goals 2020 target of reducing the prevalence of hepatitis B in children under 5 has been met and the number of people receiving treatment for hepatitis C has increased 10-fold.
However, these gains have been uneven across the world, with those most impacted least likely to benefit, and most countries failed to meet the 2020 targets. Few have timely access to birth dose in many low- and middle-income countries, with less than 10% of babies in Africa receiving a timely HBV birth dose vaccine. Stigma and discrimination continue to be a barrier to testing and care; and globally more than 350 million people are still living with this life-threatening disease.
The participants of the third World Hepatitis Summit believe that the new Global Health Sector Strategy (GHSS) for HIV, viral hepatitis and STIs, 2022-2030, provides an opportunity to refocus the global community, accelerate the response and recommit to the elimination of viral hepatitis by 2030. To make the elimination of hepatitis a reality within evolving health systems, we call on countries to adopt the integrated and person-centred approach set out in the GHSS. We ask that multisectoral action is taken to drive hepatitis elimination with civil society and the affected community an integral partner in the process. We urge countries to act now to achieve the 2025 and 2030 targets by developing and implementing national hepatitis strategies which address the five strategic directions of the GHSS and put people living with viral hepatitis at the heart of the response.
We call on countries, global health agencies and donors to commit to prioritise and fund comprehensive hepatitis programmes so that everyone, everywhere, has access to affordable prevention, testing, treatment and care.
Hepatitis Can’t Wait!