One of the leading causes of infectious disease morbidity and mortality is Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). According to WHO estimates, 170 million people have chronic HCV globally. An estimated 366,000 people die each year from hepatitis C. The prevalence of viral hepatitis in Pakistan is among the highest in the world. About 8 million people in Pakistan have HCV, according to a National Hepatitis Survey. Most HCV-infected individuals are unaware of their infection, which delays diagnosis and treatment. Delayed diagnosis may lead to complications including cirrhosis, decompensated chronic liver disease (DCLD), and HCC. This is why many charitable organizations have stepped up to champion the cause of providing free hepatitis C treatment and screening to the most deserving and impoverished people across Pakistan.
Causes of HCV
Unsafe blood transfusions, therapeutic syringe reuse, unsanitary medical and surgical procedures, going to barbershops for shaving, and ear and nose piercing are the primary factors behind the transmission of hepatitis C. To lessen the burden of hepatitis C, effective prevention programs need to be rolled out.
Treatment of HCV
The WHO suggests treatment for patients who are more than 12 years old with pan-genotypic direct-acting antivirals (DAAs). Most people with HCV infection can be cured with DAAs, and treatment time is brief (about 12 to 24 weeks), depending on whether cirrhosis is present. Poor patients often cannot afford to pay for their DAA treatment.
Free HCV Treatment and Screening
Many NGOs and other organizations have started working on different projects and campaigns to raise awareness regarding HCV. Moreover, they are also engaged in collecting donations to help poor HCV patients. Here are some of the charitable organizations that provide free hepatitis treatment and screening:
Indus Hospital & Health Network
Indus Hospital & Health Network (IHHN) offers top-notch medical care free of charge to millions of deserving patients through its nationwide facilities in Pakistan. IHHN, which began in 2007 with just one hospital in Karachi, currently oversees numerous tertiary and secondary care hospitals, physical rehabilitation centers, regional blood centers, community health centers, and various public health programs around Pakistan.
The mission of Indus Hospital & Health Network is to deliver universal, high-quality healthcare throughout Pakistan. IHHN is a non-profit healthcare organization that runs primarily on donations from the general population. IHHN collaborates with individuals, businesses, international donor organizations, educational institutions, foreign partners, and the provincial and federal governments to accomplish its mission.
Getz Pharma and the Aga Khan University Outreach Health Network
One of Pakistan’s biggest pharmaceutical firms, Getz Pharma, has agreed to donate a sizable amount of pharmaceuticals to the Aga Khan University Outreach Health Network for its Hepatitis-C Elimination Program.
Patients from low-income households across Pakistan will have access to comprehensive, high-quality treatments for hepatitis C through this donation to the Aga Khan University Outreach Health Network. This donation, distributed over two years, will assist the Aga Khan University Outreach Health Network in its mission to treat 12,000 underprivileged patients for free through its 11 Outreach Medical Centers in Punjab Sindh and KPK. Getz Pharma is supporting a mobile clinic and a national campaign to raise awareness about hepatitis C.
The Health Foundation
Its mission is to eradicate Hepatitis C from Pakistan as the country ranks second in both prevalence (after Egypt) and infection (after China). The Health Foundation is doing everything in its power, with the assistance of the public and private sectors, to eradicate hepatitis from Pakistan. THF is actively engaging the local population in areas of Pakistan where the reported prevalence of HCV is extremely high. The organization is making efforts to provide patients with essential healthcare services, including consultations, diagnostic tests, and medicines.
Transparent Hands is one of the biggest tech-based crowdfunding platforms in Pakistan’s healthcare sector. The organization is working for the welfare of underprivileged patients in Pakistan. It provides a wide spectrum of free medical and surgical services and arranges free medical camps. Thanks to 100% transparency, donors from all over the world put their faith in the trust in the organization. Since there are a large number of undiagnosed hepatitis C patients in Pakistan, Transparent Hands arranges preventive healthcare sessions by expert doctors to spread awareness about hepatitis C and also provides free hepatitis B & C screenings at its free medical camps all across Pakistan.
You can help these charitable organizations curtail the prevalence of hepatitis C in Pakistan by donating generously. Support a free hepatitis C treatment today!