SOURCE: Caring Ambassadors Hepatitis C Program
May 01, 2008 08:00 ET
Increased Knowledge and Awareness Top Priorities During Hepatitis Awareness Month
VANCOUVER, WA--(Marketwire - May 1, 2008) - As Hepatitis Awareness Month kicks off May
1st, long-time hepatitis C patient advocate Lorren Sandt has one wish:
that all people in the Pacific Northwest with chronic viral hepatitis have
the information they need to be properly diagnosed. The Caring Ambassadors
Hepatitis C Program (CAP Hepatitis C) is working in collaboration with
other community-based organizations, nonprofit groups, and state and local
health departments to make that goal a reality.
More than 200,000 people living in Washington and Oregon are living with
chronic viral hepatitis while thousands of new infections occur each year.
"Everyone in America is aware of HIV. Unfortunately, very few know about
hepatitis B and C despite the fact that they are much more prevalent than
HIV throughout the U.S.," said Lorren Sandt, CAP Hepatitis C Program
Director. "It is critical that we raise awareness now to contain the
spread of this potentially life-threatening illness, and to help those
already infected minimize the personal health consequences."
Governors Ted Kulongoski and Chris Gregoire have issued state proclamations
in observance of Viral Hepatitis Awareness Month. The Governors realize the
serious public health threat posed by chronic viral hepatitis to Oregonians
and Washingtonians. They have leant their political and personal voices to
the cause of raising awareness of the personal and community effects of
chronic viral hepatitis. With at least 1 in 50 people in the Pacific
Northwest infected with the hepatitis B or the hepatitis C virus, someone
you know is living with this potentially life-threatening disease.
During Viral Hepatitis Awareness Month, CAP Hepatitis C, other
community-based organizations, and some public health departments will be
providing hepatitis C screenings free-of-charge to those who may have been
exposed to the hepatitis C virus. Testing will be conducted at various
locations throughout Oregon and Washington. Some locations will provide
free vaccinations for hepatitis A and B. Visit www.HepCChallenge.org to
find a screening location near you or call 360-816-4186.
About Chronic Viral Hepatitis
Hepatitis C is the most common chronic, blood-borne viral infection in the
United States. An estimated 5 million Americans are infected with the
hepatitis C virus (HCV), and 1.25 million have chronic hepatitis B.
Hepatitis B is a vaccine-preventable disease. However, there is no vaccine
available to prevent chronic hepatitis C. Chronic hepatitis B and C can
lead to cirrhosis, liver failure, liver cancer, and death. Hepatitis C is
the most common cause of chronic liver disease and adult liver
transplantation in the United States.
About Caring Ambassadors Hepatitis C Program
The Caring Ambassadors Hepatitis C Program (CAP Hepatitis C) is devoted
exclusively to meeting the needs of the hepatitis C community. CAP
Hepatitis C is committed to improving the lives of people living with
hepatitis C through information and awareness and public advocacy.
The Caring Ambassadors Program is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity.
Founded in 2001, the organization is headquartered in Vancouver,
For additional information about the Caring Ambassadors Hepatitis C Program
and Hepatitis Awareness Month, contact Lorren Sandt at 360.816.4186 or