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King’s secure funding to launch community viral hepatitis B
19 March 2012 - Hundreds of people across Lambeth and Southwark will benefit from new community-based clinics that will test for and monitor people with hepatitis B.
King’s College Hospital, specialist viral hepatitis nurse, Teresa Bowyer has secured £5,000 to help set up the nurse-led clinics – thought to be the only kind in the UK.
The hepatitis B virus causes the liver to become inflamed, preventing it from working properly. Hepatitis B is more prevalent in people from Asian and Sub-Saharan Africa and is often undiagnosed and symptomless.
As well as offering free viral hepatitis screening to local people, the clinics will enable some of the 1,500 viral hepatitis patients to receive their care closer to home.
Teresa Bowyer, King’s viral hepatitis nurse, said: “Between 15% and 20% of people in Lambeth and Southwark are from countries where viral hepatitis B has a high prevalence, therefore there is a need to increase awareness, testing and referral to specialist services."
Initially the project will fund two clinics that will be run from two GP practices – locations yet to be decided.
“I am delighted that the Queen’s Nursing Institute has recognised the importance of providing additional services for viral hepatitis B patients. This is a new and innovative way of working and a safe and effective alternative for patients with hepatitis B.” Theresa added.
The money was awarded from the Queen’s Nursing Institute as part of their Fund for Innovation and Leadership during 2012 project.
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