According to a research finding by Mr Charles Ampong Adjei, a public health specialist, women who test positive for hepatitis B infection suffer psychological and social afflictions including depression, anxiety, and stigmatisation.
The Valley View University lecturer revealed this at a maiden scientific based workshop organised by Hepatitis Alliance of Ghana which took off on the 9th of November at the Greater Accra Regional Health Directorate premises.
He continued to say that: “ There is no doubt that hepatitis B infection is negatively affecting social relationships particularly among discordant couples”. ” The marriages of some women in Ghana are threatened and others divorced following their “HBV” positivity” : He added.
Also, he attributed this to stigma promoting messages on hepatitis B infection by unqualified persons on radio which seems to associate the infection with promiscuity. He therefore called on health professionals to be interested in disseminating hepatitis B related information to the general public.
Another Guest speaker who also delivered implausibly at the workshop is Dr Florence Naab, who is a renowned lecturer at university of Ghana .
She also admonished the health workers to screen expectants who visit the clinic for hepatitis B. This according to her will afford them opportunity to identify those who are positive and administer birth dose of hepatitis B vaccine to their newborns within 24 hours after birth.
Dr. Adwoa Agyei Nkansah, a physician specialist at Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital added a perfect touch to the programme by cautioning the health workers who made it to the workshop not to stigmatise Hepatitis B positive individuals when caring for them and also urged the attendees to spread the good message as well.
Over 200 hundred health professionals including nurses and midwives turned up for the maiden edition of Hepatitis Alliance of Ghana’s Workshop which sounds very impressive.