For any media enquiries contact the communications team on 0800 33 20 10.

Media Releases

The Hepatitis Foundation to collaborate with CDA for analysis of hepatitis B in New Zealand

Later this year The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand will team up with Professor Homie Razavi, Founder and Managing Director at the Centre for Disease Analysis (the CDA) in Colorado, to conduct a pharma economic analysis of hepatitis B in New Zealand.

27 June


The Foundation’s study of the connection between hepatitis B and metabolic syndrome to ‘save a lot of lives’

This month the Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand is commencing an exciting and unique study of how metabolic syndrome in people with hepatitis B may make them more prone to liver cancer.

The Liver Research Project will be led by Auckland-based Dr Papu Prasad.

16 June


May 12 is International Nurses Day

“Thank you to all of our talented and caring nurses working at the Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand. You make a difference to the lives of our patients and their families every day. Your commitment to quality care and your willingness to go the extra mile is greatly appreciated and valued by our patients, our doctors and your colleagues.”

10 May


PHARMAC proposes to make Harvoni more widely available for people living with hepatitis C in New Zealand
PHARMAC has announced a proposal to make Harvoni (Ledipasvir and sofosbuvir) more widely available for people living with chronic hepatitis C in New Zealand. Harvoni has a cure rate of 90+ per cent, as well as fewer side-effects and shorter treatment duration than previous treatment options. The medication is taken in tablet form and can treat all genotypes of hepatitis C.

08 May


Foundation Hepatitis C Follow-up Programme to be managed from regional perspective

Patients who were registered with the Hepatitis Foundation’s National Hepatitis C Follow-up Programme will now have their monitoring and follow-up managed by their local GP. Over the next few months’ hepatitis C patient care will be transferred to DHBs (District Health Boards) and managed from a regional perspective.

28 March


The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand launches new website.

The Foundation have launched a new website this month! This website has been developed to be easier to navigate and more user friendly than the previous version. The internet is an ever changing environment and the Foundation wants to help visitors find information, support and news quickly and easily. As a part of this initiative, the Foundation is also launching a quarterly hepatitis enewsletter. Users can sign up for the enewsletter through the website homepage.

20 March


The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand is gifting two FibroScan machines to help health organisations around New Zealand speed up monitoring and treatment.

The Hepatitis Foundation will gift one FibroScan to the Auckland Needle Exchange and the other to Christchurch District Health Board (DHB) which will also be used by the Christchurch Needle Exchange and surrounding DHBs.

02 November


The Hepatitis Foundation has invited Chronic Liver Disease Nurse, Rachel Wundke over from Australia to present an Advanced Liver Disease Course at The Hepatitis Foundation Nurses Conference.

Nurses will gain knowledge at the conference which will be passed on to their colleagues, allowing the conference to educate many health professionals around the country. The conference will be held on October 27 – 28 at The Heritage Hotel, Auckland.

19 October


From October 1, 2016,  GPs around New Zealand will start prescribing life-changing medication to many of the 50,000 people living with hepatitis C in New Zealand.

Viekira Pak, a breakthrough treatment which was previously out of reach to ordinary New Zealanders, is now fully funded by Pharmac. The drug treats people with hepatitis C genotype 1 who have compensated disease, which is more than half of all New Zealanders living with the virus.

30 September


A guide for journalists

About hepatitis B in New Zealand

Hepatitis B is spread through contact with blood or body fluids. An estimated 100,000 people live with chronic hepatitis B in New Zealand.

Those most at risk of hepatitis B are people who:

  • Are of Maori, Pacific Island, or Asian ethnicity over the age of 25 years
  • Were born outside New Zealand
  • Have a mother or close family member has hepatitis B
  • Live with someone who has hepatitis B.

About hepatitis C in New Zealand

Hepatitis C is a blood-borne virus that can damage the liver. The virus causes inflammation of the liver, which can affect the way the liver functions. Currently, there is no vaccine to prevent hepatitis C infection. However, in many cases, it can be cured. An estimated 50,000 people have chronic hepatitis C in New Zealand. However, only 40 per cent are aware they have the virus.

People at risk of hepatitis C are those who:

  • Have ever injected drugs (once is enough)
  • Have ever used unsterile equipment for tattooing or body piercings
  • Had a blood transfusion prior to 1992 (when blood was first screened for hepatitis C)
  •  Have lived or received medical treatment in a high-risk country
  • Have ever been in prison
  • Were born to a mother with hepatitis C.

Hepatitis C has recently become the leading cause of liver transplantation and liver cancer in New Zealand. If no action is taken, the number of people developing liver cancer or dying as a result of chronic hepatitis C in New Zealand will treble by 2030.

About The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand

The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand is a not-for-profit organisation that aims to improve health outcomes for people living with chronic hepatitis B and C. The Hepatitis Foundation is funded by the Ministry of Health to promote positive health outcomes through education and research into viral hepatitis, and early detection and long-term follow-up of chronic hepatitis B and C.

© The Hepatitis Foundation of New Zealand 2016