The American Legion has joined the national movement “Take Down Hep C” to educate all veterans about the risk factors associated with Hepatitis C and to encourage Hep C antibody testing. The campaign is made possible with support from AbbVie, Inc., a national corporate alliance of The American Legion.
Studies have shown that a higher prevalence of Hep C is seen in veterans versus civilians.
Veterans are at a higher risk due to:
- Exposure to contaminated blood on the battlefield.
- Blood transfusions, blood product or organ transplant before 1992.
- Accidental needle stick injuries in health-care settings.
- Sharing of personal items, such as razors or toothbrushes.
Studies also show that:
- More than 5 percent of veterans enrolled in VA health care have Hep C, a blood-borne virus that causes inflammation of the liver, which can lead to cirrhosis and liver cancer.
- Up to 75 percent of people with chronic Hep C in the United States do not know they have it.
- Most people living with the virus have no symptoms following infection.
The Hep C virus is curable but the key is getting tested. To learn more about Hep C risk factors, why it’s important to get tested and how to join the fight to Take Down Hep C, visit: www.legion.org/takedownhepc