Hepatitis B around the world

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Hepatitis B around the world

Hepatitis B is a contagious disease caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV) and is the leading cause of liver cancer.

Hepatitis B transmission from mother to child is the leading cause of chronic infection.

If not vaccinated, 9 in 10 children infected with HBV at birth will progress to chronic infections.

The percentage of newborns given the shot of Hepatitis B vaccine at birth in each region:

  • Americas – 69%
  • Africa –  4% (2018; same for 2017)
  • Europe – 41%
  • Eastern Mediterranean – 34%
  • South East Asia – 44%
  • Western Pacific – 85%

The African Region has the highest number of hepatitis B infections in children and the fewest newborn given the hepatitis B vaccine at birth.

Vaccinating babies within 24 hours after birth followed by 2-3 vaccinations in infancy is the key to eliminating HBV infections.

Learn more about CDC’s global immunization efforts: www.cdc.gov/globalhealth/immunization/

Page last reviewed: April 26, 2018
Content source: Global Health