There are about 150million people infected with Hepatitis C globally, of this about 500,000 are expected to die annually. Yet not much is heard or done about the disease worldwide, awareness is very low and treatment is very expensive. This has been the case in South Africa until recently.
Thanks to HIV/AIDS activists, the country has just received the first consignment of cheap medicine for the treatment of Hepatitis C. Besides that, an NGO based in the country, Step Up Project is also implementing a needle exchange in which drug addicts are made to exchange their used needles for fresh needles. This is in addition to breaking the transmission of HIV, will also break the spread of Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C like HIV is transmitted through contaminated blood; in a pilot study in South Africa, it was found that Hepatitis C was more prevalent than HIV.