Washington D.C., Dec. 12, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Global Liver Institute (GLI), the premier patient-led liver health nonprofit operating globally, released the second edition of its “Global State of Liver Health” report, now including 22 countries covering every region of the world. Following the impetus of the Liver Health is Public Health initiative, international experts drew attention to pressing opportunities for their respective governments to prioritize and improve liver health.
Liver disease continues to pose a heavy burden for the world and its health systems:
- Liver disease causes 2 million deaths per year around the globe.
- An estimated 1.5 billion people in the world have chronic liver disease – an increase of 13% since the beginning of the millennium.
- About 70% of liver cancer is preventable.
- Even rare liver diseases appear to be rising in prevalence; in Germany, for instance, prevalence has risen by around 30% in less than five years.
“Our continued exploration of the scope and scale of the impact of liver diseases gives us both pause and hope. Powerful human intellect has developed many innovative solutions,” noted GLI CEO Donna R. Cryer, JD. “Rather than let these solutions go to waste, it is now time to direct political will towards putting them into practice and ensuring the ability to achieve liver health – and overall health – around the world.”
Strategies and technologies currently exist that can prevent liver disease or catch it early. However, putting these tools into practice can require financial investment, expert training, and often complex execution on a scale that necessitates government support. Several of the report’s expert advisors highlighted the policy opportunities and successes that might support liver health:
“We don’t have many tools currently to control tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption, and even the consumption of unhealthy diets in Vietnam,” shared Dr. Tung Pham, report advisor and lecturer /physician at Hanoi Medical University. “These are the second and third leading factors, so a tightening of standards, maybe raising taxes and implementing other promotional programs, will be essential.”
In contrast, a liberal treatment program that provided newly developed hepatitis C treatment to patients in Australia without many barriers has eliminated more than half of the viral disease throughout the country. As report advisor and leading hepatologist Dr. Simone Strasser noted in the report, several features brought about a successful program, including comprehensive training of primary care providers, minimal direct cost to patients, and local access to treatment.
National experts have identified the greatest threats to liver health in their communities. Now, those who care about liver health and its related conditions must urge their national leaders to prioritize and implement solutions.
The Liver Health is Public Health initiative is made possible thanks to the support of Sanofi and Salix Pharmaceuticals.
About Global Liver Institute
Global Liver Institute (GLI) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded in the belief that liver health must take its place on the global public health agenda commensurate with the prevalence and impact of liver illness. GLI promotes innovation, encourages collaboration, and supports the scaling of optimal approaches to help eradicate liver diseases. Operating globally, GLI is committed to solving the problems that matter to liver patients and equipping advocates to improve the lives of individuals and families impacted by liver disease. GLI holds Platinum Transparency with Candid/GuideStar, is a member of the National Health Council, and serves as a Healthy People 2030 Champion. Follow GLI on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube or visit www.globalliver.org.
Christine Maalouf Global Liver Institute firstname.lastname@example.org