Hepatitis B is the most common serious liver infection in the world. About a third of the world population, approximately 2 billion people, have been infected at one point in their lives, including 350 million people who are chronic carriers of the disease. The hepatitis B virus is 50 to 100 times more infectious than HIV. According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 600,000 people die every year related to the infection.
The virus is transmitted through blood and infected bodily fluids. This can occur through direct blood-to-blood contact, unprotected sex, use of unsterile needles, and from an infected woman to her newborn during the delivery process.
The Hepatitis B Foundation is the only national non-profit organization solely dedicated to the global problem of hepatitis B. Its mission is to find a cure and improve the quality of life for those affected by hepatitis B worldwide. The Foundation’s commitment includes funding focused research, promoting disease awareness, supporting immunization and treatment initiatives, and serving as the primary source of information for patients and their families, the medical and scientific community, and the general public.
In 2003 the Hepatitis B Foundation founded the Baruch S. Blumberg Institute to fulfill its research mission of finding a cure for hepatitis B in our lifetime. The Baruch S. Blumberg Institute is the nation’s leading non-profit research organization dedicated to hepatitis B and liver cancer worldwide.
Both the Hepatitis B Foundation and the Baruch S. Blumberg Institute are housed in a state-of-the-art biotechnology center in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. I have served on the Boards of both the Hepatitis B Foundation and the Baruch S. Blumberg Institute since 2003, and currently serve as the Chairman of the Board of the Foundation. If you would like to learn more about the outstanding work these institutions carry out, including how to help the more than 350,000,000 people suffering from the disease, please visit either www.hepb.org or www.blumberginstitute.org.