Hepatitis C Educators workshop at Wilcox Hospital


Malama Pono in partnership with the state Department of Health, Kaua‘i Medical Clinic, Wilcox Memorial Hospital and the Hepatitis C Support Project of San Francisco presents the Hepatitis C Educators workshop from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Dec. 12, at Wilcox Hospital conference rooms B & C, a news release states.

Instructor Alan Franciscus has designed this all-day workshop for any person concerned about or working with Kaua‘i’s estimated 1,500 residents living with Hepatitis C. A complete overview of the disease, its health implications and medical treatments, whether traditional or complementary, will be presented.

Successful participants will be awarded certification as a Hepatitis C Educator and would be prepared to guide and educate persons infected with the Hepatitis C virus. Six hours of continuing education credit will also be awarded to substance abuse counselors. The workshop is free and includes lunch plus morning and afternoon refreshments.

Malama Pono’s mission is to stop the spread of this disease and even eliminate it, if possible. It’s a blood borne virus that is responsible for much of the liver failure and liver cancer on Kaua‘i.

According to Peter Whiticar, branch chief of the Department of Health STD/AIDS division, “chronic infectious hepatitis is the leading cause of liver cancer of which Hawai‘i has the highest rate in the nation. The rate of hepatitis C-related deaths in Hawai‘i is expected to triple in the next 10 years. A cure for the disease was announced in late 2007, but not all patients are good candidates for therapy. In addition, it appears that nearly 900 of those infected with Hepatitis C on Kaua‘i don’t even know they carry the virus.”

The Hepatitis C Educator workshop is one in the series of Dr. Jimmy Yoon’s Infectious Disease Seminars being presented to Kaua‘i’s medical and lay community throughout 2008 and 2009.

For more information or registration forms prior to the Dec. 10 deadline, contact Malama Pono Executive Director D.Q. Jackson at 246-9577 or  e-mail dq@malama-pono.org


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