Atinuke Nukay/TnTv Network
The National President for Hepatitis Zero Foundation (World Eradication Project) Dr Mike Omotosho reveals that about 5million people are estimated to die annually, directly or indirectly from hepatitis alone, while emphasising that the figure is more than the number of people who die of HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis combined, and it is 100 times more transmittable.
In an interview with our correspondent at one of the free screening and subsidised vaccine stand in Abuja, where people came in droves to get screened by Medical personnel on ground. Dr Omotosho hinted that Hepatitis as been around for some time, describing the virus as a silent killer. He added that a lot of people do not seem to be aware of the deadly virus and that about 27 million Nigerians are working around with the virus.
According to Dr Omotosho, Hepatitis Zero Foundation decided to raise the bar from just campaigning to reaching out to people, have them test for free and then vaccinate them for a highly subsidised rate which he says its owing to the number of people who are unaware of the virus and do not know how deadly it is.
“Less than 10 million of those who actually know their status, a bulk of the populace are not even aware and spread it around unknowingly. That is actually where the problem lies, that is why we have taken it upon ourselves at Hepatitis zero, to first advocate, secondly create awareness, screen and then partner with relevant stakeholders. Over 500 locations across the nation and we are also working with the Rotarian Action Group for Hepatitis Eradication. Its not a death sentence, it can be prevented within 72 hours of exposure. That is why we want people to be aware of this. We aim to target Zero Hepatitis by the year 2030.