Everything you need to know about the Hepatitis Awareness Campaign 2018
NSW Hepatitis Awareness Week 2018 will begin on Monday 23 July (with World Hepatitis Day falling on Saturday 28 July). Hepatitis NSW and Multicultural HIV and Hepatitis Service (MHAHS), in partnership with NSW Health, will run a state-wide viral hepatitis campaign to raise community awareness of hep B and hep C. The campaign will roll-out with a special focus during Hepatitis Awareness Week. Here’s everything you need to know about, and everything you can order from, the campaign, for your ongoing awareness raising purposes.
Hepatitis Awareness Week events calendar
All across NSW, agencies and clinics will be hosting awareness-raising events. These Awareness Week events would flood our website calendar, so we present them here in this Word Doc table.
We have HEP C – CURE IS EASY billboards at several train stations around the Sydney Metro Area, on numerous Sydney metro buses and HEP C adverts in almost 100 chemists across Sydney. To make sure people in regional and rural areas don’t miss out there will be HEP C adverts appearing in shopping centres, hotels, clubs and airports in major NSW cities and towns.
Social media will be in full swing – we are doing promoted posts through Facebook. Chances are, if you are on Facebook, you will see one or more of those posts – if you do, please consider liking and or sharing with your friends, it will help spread the word even further.
The purpose of this public advertising is not just to raise awareness of hep C, but to also direct people to the Hepatitis NSW 1800 803 990 Infoline and/or to campaign websites:
From there, people will have increased capacity to make decisions as to whether they need testing/treatment.
Multicultural HIV & Hepatitis Service (MHAHS), our partner organisation in this campaign, have been very hard at work developing video resources for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (CALD) around hepatitis C. Produced in Chinese, Vietnamese and Arabic – with English subtitles – these videos will direct people towards their community medical services for testing.
Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people
Our consultations with Aboriginal people and past campaign evaluations told us that people from the community were not necessarily interested in posters that listed prescriptive slogans or impersonal instructions. Hepatitis NSW has instead produced a small booklet for Aboriginal people – Hep C Cure is Easy – around that discusses the three key messages of prevention, testing and cure – using an easy read format and short personal stories. These are available to all Aboriginal Health organisations and agencies.
We’ve also developed free merchandise – canvas bags and water bottles – that can be given out through Aboriginal Medical Services and community events held by other Aboriginal health organisations or Local Health Districts.
There will also be a half page advert in the late July issue of Koori Mail. The material will direct them to the Hepatitis NSW 1800 803 990 Infoline, campaign website, and/or their local AMS/GP.
People in prisons
As we know, there is a high prevalence of hep C in NSW prisons, up to one in three people in some instances.
Hepatitis NSW has produced some basic but helpful easy read hep C material for people who are entering the corrective services system, with messages around using FINCOL for safe injecting practices (vital in an environment that has no NSP); plus info on testing and starting treat-ment while in prison (and a reminder, for those who might be on treatment, to let the nurse know so that they do not miss a dose). Postcards (male and female) for prison clinics will have the same information for those who are already inside.
These resources are being distributed by Hepatitis NSW via Justice Health & Forensic Mental Health Network.
We’re also building a special hep C intranet site for the NSW Corrective Services network, with similar messaging, that will launch in early September – a bit later than Hepatitis Awareness Week but necessitated by upgrades in the system. This will give prisoners access to information to help them live hep C free while inside.
People who inject drugs
During consultations with people from the drug injecting community it became very clear that they wanted to hear personal stories rather than read posters or leaflets. They wanted to be told that cures – rather than treatments – for hep C were now available.
The word “comic book” was mentioned during most consultations! People referenced the easy read, non-judgemental educational comics published by Streetwize Comics from years ago as well as Hepatitis NSW’s own Tx! Mag as examples of how they would like to receive information. As such, we’ve developed a unique resource– Livin’ Hep Free, a 12 page mini-comic. In just a few short pages, characters discuss prevention of hep C transmission, testing and treatment, all within a safe injecting context.
We’ve also produced three unique fit-pack stickers and there’s a special campaign website page that directs people to local NSPs and other relevant services, resources and organisations.
Doctors & Clinicians
To reach out to GPs who may have patients living with hep B and/or hep C we’ll be placing inserts in upcoming issues of the Australian Family Physician and the Australian Doctor magazines. The adverts frame the question around the doctor’s patients – “Hep C Cure is Easy” and “Is Your Patient Living with Hep C – Cure is Easy.”
The A4 sized inserts will have a poster format on one side, and treatment-related information on the other.
Additionally, streaming display of patient-targeted posters will run via LCD screens in selected pharmacies and General Practice surgeries across metro and rural NSW.
This page last updated 12 June 2018