The History of the Foundation

The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand has completed many major screening, vaccination and research programmes in New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and Vietnam during the 30-year history.

  • In 1984, the newly established Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand, implemented the Kawerau Seroprevalence Study. They tested 93% of Kawerau’s population for hepatitis B. The results showed that the hepatitis B virus was highly endemic.
  • Nine years later, as a result of the Foundation’s work, New Zealand was the first sovereign nation to introduce universal hepatitis B vaccination for all children.
  • From 1999 to 2002 the largest national hepatitis B screening programme ever conducted took place in New Zealand. A total of 177,292 New Zealanders were screened with 11,936 people with chronic hepatitis B identified.
  • The start of the 21st century saw the establishment of the free national long-term follow-up programme at the Foundation. The programme continues today, successfully following up and monitoring over 24,000 people with chronic hepatitis B.
  • In 2012 the Hepatitis C Pilot was launched in the Bay of Plenty and greater Wellington area. The pilots concluded June 2016.
  • In 2016 the Foundation was contracted to provide hepatitis C services in the Midlands (Waikato, BoP, Taranaki, Lakes and Tairawhiti DHBs) and Central (Wellington, Hutt and Wairarapa DHBs) regions. The Foundation continues to deliver community based Fibroscan services in Midlands and Central regions.

Please read our information sheet for more detail about the history of the Hepatitis Foundation.

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