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CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update
UGANDA: Hepatitis B Kills 29 People in West Nile
Martin Okudi
January 8, 2013
Daily Monitor (Kampala) (01.05.13)

Health officials in West Nile, Uganda, reported that cases of hepatitis B virus infection continued to increase in Moyo and Adjumani Districts because the health facilities in the area do not have the vaccines to prevent the virus. In private clinics a dose of hepatitis B vaccine costs about 80,000 Uganda shillings (US $29.44), which was too expensive for most patients. District disease surveillance teams report that between 2010 and 2012, there were at least 21 deaths from hepatitis B recorded in Moyo and eight in the Adjumani District. Health workers state that many more people may have died from hepatitis B infection, but it was not recorded as most of them were treated at private clinics. Dr. Dominic Drametu, medical superintendent of Adjumani District, stated that in the last three years, the hospital had treated about 90 cases of hepatitis B and approximately 8 of the patients had died. He noted that the hospital treats at least two cases of hepatitis B virus infection every month, but that the facility lacked the necessary drugs to treat them.