Volume 90, Issue 6
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of active hepatitis B and C virus infections among refugees from various countries in Africa and Asia. Pre-admission serum samples collected during 2002–2007 from refugees originating from Bhutan ( = 755), Myanmar ( = 1076), Iraq ( = 1137), Laos ( = 593), Thailand ( = 622), and Somalia ( = 707) were tested for hepatitis B virus (HBV) DNA and hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA. The HBV DNA (genotypes A, B, C, and G) was detected in 12.1% of samples negative for anti-HBs. Highest HBV prevalence was found among Hmong; lowest among Bhutanese. The HCV RNA (genotypes 1a, 1b, 1c, 3b, 6n, and 6m) was detected in 1.3% of the samples. Highest HCV prevalence was found among Hmong from Thailand; lowest among Iraqis. Screening specific refugee groups at high risk for viral hepatitis infections will identify infected individuals who could benefit from referral to care and treatment and prevent further transmissions.


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  • Received : 31 Jan 2014
  • Accepted : 05 Mar 2014
  • Published online : 04 Jun 2014

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