New Delhi, July 27, 2017: World Hepatitis Day is observed on July 28 each year, to increase global awareness of viral hepatitis (a viral inflammation of the liver), and to mobilize a push for better access to treatment, improved prevention programs and government action. The theme for this year’s iteration is “ELIMINATE HEPATITIS”, which emphasizes the drive to implement the global health strategy on hepatitis for 2016-2021. A major focus area for this is treatment, including new drugs and therapies for people with chronic hepatitis. According to the Indian Society for Clinical Research, this goal can be achieved, but a lot more effort needs to be made in terms of hepatitis clinical research, particularly in India which carries a high burden of this disease group. According to the WHO, each year Hepatitis causes around 410,000 deaths in South East Asia, including India. It is also a major cause of liver cancer and cirrhosis.
“Given the huge disease burden India carries, it is crucial for us to scale-up clinical research for many of our public health challenges, including hepatitis,” said Dr Chirag Trivedi, President, ISCR .
“People living with viral hepatitis have a right to safe, affordable and effective care and treatment and more positive outcomes. ISCR’s continuous advocacy efforts with the government and regulators has contributed to a balanced regulatory environment, increased transparency, more clarity of processes and a shortening of clinical trial approval timelines. We now need to prioritise our focus on major public health scourges.” India has 17 percent of the global population and 20 percent of the global disease burden but less than 1.4 percent of all global clinical trials are done in India.
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