The forgotten people: Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection as a priority for the inclusion health agenda.
journal contributionposted on 2023-02-13, 11:45 authored by Emily Martyn, Sarah Eisen, Nicky Longley, Philippa Harris, Julian Surey, James Norman, Michael Brown, Binta Sultan, Tongai G Maponga, Collins Iwuji, Stuart Flanagan, Indrajit Ghosh, Alistair Story, Philippa C Matthews
Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection represents a significant global health threat, accounting for 300 million chronic infections and up to 1 million deaths each year. HBV disproportionately affects people who are under-served by health systems due to social exclusion, and can further amplify inequities through its impact on physical and mental health, relationship with stigma and discrimination, and economic costs. The 'inclusion health' agenda focuses on excluded and vulnerable populations, who often experience barriers to accessing healthcare, and are under-represented by research, resources, interventions, advocacy, and policy. In this article, we assimilate evidence to establish HBV on the inclusion health agenda, and consider how this view can inform provision of better approaches to diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. We suggest approaches to redress the unmet need for HBV interventions among excluded populations as an imperative to progress the global goal for the elimination of viral hepatitis as a public health threat.