|OCA Promotes Community Health on World Hepatitis DayFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
19 May 2009
Sarah Smith Nester | OCA Communications Manager
202.223.5500 | firstname.lastname@example.org
President Barack Obama recently proclaimed May as World Hepatitis Month and today, May 19, as World Hepatitis Day. OCA, a national organization dedicated to advancing the social, political and economic wellbeing of Asian Pacific Americans (APAs), encourages all community members to become educated about this life-threatening health issue.
Hepatitis B, which affects up to 2 million Americans, is a major cause of end-stage liver disease and primary liver cancer. Approximately one out of 10 APAs has hepatitis B, putting them at up to a 1 in 4 risk of death from liver failure or liver cancer. More than half the estimated 1.5 million carriers in the United States are APAs.
May is also Asian Pacific Heritage Month and OCA calls on all community leaders to include discussions and information on prevention and treatment of hepatitis B in their events and communications this month.
"OCA has worked hard to educate the APA community about hepatitis B with health fairs and informational booths and will continue to provide information,” said National President Ken Lee. "Since hepatitis B is such a heightened problem for APAs it is important to increase the visibility of this disease.
”Today, Congress, in partnership with the Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO), held a briefing to stress the relationship between hepatitis B and cancer. The US Department of Health and Human Services also hosted an event called "The National Fight to Eliminate Hepatitis B” where national and local organizations came together to improve domestic and global actions for reducing chronic hepatitis B in APA communities.