The power of partnership was on display Friday, July 26 as more than 60 community partners joined Niagara Health at our sixth annual Hepatitis C Awareness event and community health fair at Montebello Park in St. Catharines.
The event's growth has been impressive over the years. On Friday, hundreds of community members came to the park to learn about the wide range of services the Niagara Health Hepatitis C Care Clinic and other community agencies offer to residents. The Screen For Life Coach and Niagara Region’s Mobile Dental Services were also at the event.
Registered Nurses from Niagara Health’s Hepatitis C Care Clinic and Registered Nurses from Niagara Region Public Health Outreach Services program provided about 30 Hepatitis C tests.
Karen Usick, a community co-ordinator with the Hepatitis C Care Clinic and organizer of the event, told the st. Catharines Standard: "Our program is expanding and we're expanding out across Niagara region. People are more aware of what we provide. We're becoming more visible in the community."
Hepatitis C in Niagara
Niagara’s rate of hepatitis C is higher than the provincial average.
Hepatitis C is spread when blood carrying the virus gets into the bloodstream of another person. The virus attacks the liver and if left untreated can result in the development of cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer.
While thousands of Canadians are infected, many are not aware and remain undiagnosed. It is vital to get tested if you think you may have been exposed to hepatitis C.
Media coverage from the Hepatitis event
St. Catharines Standard: Niagara health workers focus on community in hep C outreach
Niagara This Week: Hepatitis C rates run high in Niagara