Viral Hepatitis: Hepatitis Scotland
Hepatitis Scotland is the national voluntary sector organisation created by Scottish Drugs Forum, with Scottish Government funding, to help improve responses to viral hepatitis prevention, treatment and support.
Viral hepatitis – Hepatitis B and C - is a disease which causes inflammation of the liver and can lead to serious illness and death if left untreated.
It is estimated that around 39,000 people across Scotland are chronically affected by Hepatitis C - many of them unaware they are carrying the virus - while Hepatitis B infections are a growing cause of concern.
An estimated 90 percent of people in Scotland with the Hepatitis C virus have injected drugs.
Scottish Drugs Forum hosts Hepatitis Scotland, which supports and leads the work of voluntary sector groups in partnership with statutory agencies and patients towards:
- reducing the spread of viral hepatitis
- increasing the numbers of people diagnosed with viral hepatitis
- improving access to hepatitis treatment and support
- improving the range and quality of prevention, treatment and care services
- reducing stigma associated with viral hepatitis.
Hepatitis Scotland’s key work focuses on:
- information-sharing with professionals and people affected by viral hepatitis
- training/capacity building and networking: fostering links with a range of services including those working in drugs and sexual health and with vulnerable young people
- patient involvement and representation - exploring the views of those affected by viral hepatitis.
For more information on viral hepatitis and the work of Hepatitis Scotland, see www.hepatitisscotland.org.uk