Champion eNews | August 2021 | 98

This issue:

NSW Hepatitis Awareness Week and World Hepatitis Day 2021


NSW Hepatitis Awareness Week and World Hepatitis Day 2021

NSW Hepatitis Awareness WeekWednesday, 28 July marked World Hepatitis Day 2021, an important opportunity to give visibility to, and raise awareness of viral hepatitis, as well to drive better outcomes for people affected by viral hepatitis.

This year’s theme was “Hepatitis can’t wait”, conveying the urgency of efforts needed to eliminate hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030. Even in the current COVID-19 crisis, we can’t wait to act on viral hepatitis. Viral hepatitis doesn’t care about other health crises. Left unchecked both hep B and hep C will continue to be transmitted and continue to damage the livers of those already living with the viruses, as well as those newly affected.

The good news is that recent changes to Medicare means Australians can have access to management, care and treatment of hep B or treatment and cure of hep C from the comfort, privacy and safety of their own home using telehealth. Even testing for hep C can be done at home using a free Dried Blood Spot (DBS) test kit ordered from dbstest.helath.nsw.gov.au

Advances have been made in Australia and New South Wales on many fronts for both hep B and hep C. While much has been achieved through the combined and concerted efforts of community health organisations, clinicians, health departments, and researchers, we all agree that there is still much to be done to meet elimination targets in this country.

In NSW, World Hepatitis Day is part of Hepatitis Awareness Week which ran from 26-31 July. The week included a range of local and state-wide activities, events, and initiatives to improve population outcomes for people living with, and affected by, hep B and hep C.

While 2020 had been hard on our ability to highlight, campaign, and raise awareness of viral hepatitis in New South Wales, it had nothing on 2021. With a COVID lockdown affecting almost half the population of the state, and various social restrictions for the rest, planning and executing this year’s Hepatitis Awareness Week became a moveable feast. We persevered regardless! Here is a rundown of the campaigns and events we held during the last week of July.

HEP CURED

HEP CUREDA key activity this year was the roll out of HEP CURED, a campaign using simple messaging and strong imagery to promote the availability and effectiveness of cures for hepatitis C.

The core message of the campaign instils a sense of connection with loved ones, or significant others. The campaign was developed in partnership with NUAA and NSW Ministry of Health.

Three key posters were designed based on research showing the importance of “connection to others” as motivations to seek cure. The posters serve as conversation starters that lead to engagement around hepatitis C testing and treatment.

HEP CURED utilised posters in clinics and services, advertising in shopping centres and washrooms, laneway and regional billboard advertising, railway billboards, and selected bus shelters and street furniture.

Although some elements of the campaign – most notably the face-to-face peer placement at nominated NSPs, OSTs, community clinics and health organisations – were curtailed due to the COVID lockdown in Greater Sydney, Blue Mountains and Illawarra, other sites were able to continue with COVID-Safe settings. It will continue to run for several more months.

For more info>>> hepC.org.au

World Hepatitis Day Video

Find out more - World Hepatitis Day videoWe launched a special video on July 28 to mark World Hepatitis Day 2021. You may have seen our invite to join the launch – but if you haven’t had a chance to watch it yet you can still find it on our YouTube Channel >>> CLICK HERE.

Included in the video are stories featuring some of our many amazing and inspiring lived experience speakers. These people share their own very personal stories and perspectives on life with hep B or hep C, and what management or cure, respectively, means to them. These stories are a powerful reminder that while we focus on the disease, at the heart of all we do and what we want to achieve, are real people. People with hopes, dreams, families, friends, and a desire to get the most out of life.

Professor Greg Dore and Dr Alice Lee are also featured, providing important insights into efforts to eliminate viral hepatitis.

Social Media Initiative

The weekend before World Hepatitis Day, Hepatitis NSW launched a social media campaign to increase awareness of testing, management, and treatment of hep B and hep C. Using ten different adverts – video and display – across Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Google Ads, they played for a ten-day period. Targeted to NSW, they were seen, in total, over 5.4 million times, with over half a million interactions.

The ads directed people to specific pages on our website – with the outcome being not just an increase in web traffic but also of engagements with our Hepatitis Infoline and/or webchat.

Funding to place these adverts was provided by a grant from NSW Communities and Justice through their Social Sector Transformation Fund.

The adverts were targeted across all of NSW with messaging on hep C, hep B, and liver health respectively. If you are on social media, you may have seen them!

DISPLAY ADVERTS
These adverts contained stills from some of our existing videos…

Facebook hep C Facebook hep B
Facebook liver health Facebook hep C 2

 

VIDEO ADVERTS
These are 10 second adverts – click image to watch the video on YouTube.

Hep C video Hep B video Liver video

 

These are 5 seconds each – click image to watch the video on YouTube.

Hep C video Hep B video Liver video

 

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