The month of May is designated as Hepatitis Awareness Month in the United States, and May 19th is Hepatitis Testing Day. During May, HUD is joining national efforts to shed light on this little-known epidemic by raising awareness of viral hepatitis and encouraging our special needs populations to get tested.
Consistent with the well-known link between homelessness and adverse outcomes in overall health and life expectancy, studies suggest that there is a higher prevalence of hepatitis among homeless populations compared with the national rate. Go to the Disease Risks and Homelessness webpage on the HUD Exchange to access research, tools, and guidance for homeless service providers looking to prevent and treat communicable diseases, such as viral hepatitis. The webpage also provides resources for people experiencing homelessness to access local health care centers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has developed a number of resources to help raise awareness and link people into testing for viral hepatitis.
- The Hepatitis Awareness Month and Testing Day Resource Center has free tools to help support your awareness activities and testing events. Resources include buttons, badges, or a quiz widget for your website or email signatures; Live Read Radio Scripts templates to pitch your events to local radio stations; and sample proclamations for Hepatitis Awareness Month and/or national Hepatitis Testing Day.
- Join the Be #HepAware Thunderclap on May 19th at 12:00 PM EDT/9:00 AM PDT! Supporters can sign up in advance using their Twitter, Facebook, or Tumblr accounts for a one time post that will automatically be sent on May 19th. Visit the Be #HepAware Thunderclap! webpage to sign up and help spread the word to your members and followers. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Resource Center for more details.
- Encourage people to take the Hepatitis Risk Assessment to get personalized hepatitis vaccinations and testing recommendations. The Risk Assessment can be shared by posting badges on your website or by sending out the risk assessment e-card.
- The Know More Hepatitis campaign, which encourages people born from 1945-1965 to get tested for hepatitis C, and the multilingual Know Hepatitis B campaign, promoting hepatitis B testing among Asian Americans, both released new phases this spring. Free campaign resources include video public service announcements (PSAs) and posters, radio PSAs, infographics, fact sheets, customizable event flyers, and other materials.
- Visit the Division of Viral Hepatitis’s website for information and resources on all types of hepatitis, including fact sheets and provider resources.
- Follow @cdchep on Twitter for information about hepatitis resources, tools, publications, campaign updates, and events. Use the hashtags #HepAware, #hepatitis, and #HepTestingDay to join the conversation and share information on viral hepatitis.
- Sign up for monthly emails from the CDC about new publications, recommendations, new materials or significant events.