Hepatitis B, migrants and Barcelona
The HBV-COMSAVA project will provide screening to the communities of Ghanaian and Senegalese migrants living in the greater Barcelona area. “The project utilises innovative methods to collect blood samples (like dried blood spots) and novel diagnostic tools, including rapid-detection tests, to facilitate a rapid diagnosis, and is being led in conjunction with community members,” says principal investigator Jeffrey V Lazarus. Those patients who require treatment will be referred to two university hospitals. In contrast to hepatitis C, there is an effective vaccine to prevent infection by the hepatitis B virus. The project, which is being led in conjunction with community members, will also provide vaccination against hepatitis B. “Being vaccinated protects against infection and is especially important for women, to protect themselves and their children,” says PhD researcher Camila Picchio, who is coordinating the project.