Egypt launches third phase of hepatitis C eradication campaign

Ahram Online , Saturday 2 Mar 2019

Hepatitis C campaign
File Photo: An Egyptian doctor makes a test during an unprecedented campaign that aims to test 50 million people to detect and treat hepatitis C patients in a bid to eliminate the disease by 2022, in Cairo, Egypt November 11, 2018. (Photo: Reuters)

The Egyptian government has launched the third phase of the 100 Million Lives campaign, a nationwide hepatitis C drive that has so far screened 30 million people for the disease.

In a Friday statement, Egypt’s Health Minister Hala Zayed said the third phase would include the governorates of Giza, Gharbiya, Sharqiya, Daqahliya, New Valley, Qena, and Minya and is expected to cover 23 million people.

The largest populations for screening are in Giza and Sharqiya, with 5.4 million and 4.2 million citizens respectively. 

The third phase will conclude at the end of April.

The first two phases screened 30.3 million people, making the campaign the country's largest ever anti-hepatitis C drive.

As of 2015, some 22 percent of Egypt's population had hepatitis C.

Over the past three years, Egypt has been using a variety of new medications to combat the virus, which affects the liver.

In 2016, the health ministry announced it had achieved a 96 percent cure rate of the disease nationwide.

The health ministry has vowed to completely eliminate the disease from Egypt by 2022. 

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