About the resource
This film resource aims to increase awareness and understanding of hepatitis B and C amongst the Pakistani community in East London, and be suitable for both community members and GPs/medical practitioners.
Low levels of knowledge amongst both community members and GPs about hepatitis B and C, and who is at increased risk and why, are causing people to go untested. Both hepatitis B and C are viruses which affect the liver; in the UK, 215,000 people are thought to be infected with chronic hepatitis C, and 180,000 with chronic hepatitis B.  Pakistan has particular high rates of both hepatitis B and C, and in the UK, data of almost 5,000 people indicate that nearly one in twenty people born in Pakistan and living in England has chronic viral hepatitis.
Through jointly working with patients, imams and scholars, GPs, academics, community organisations and businesses, we are creating short films in English and Urdu to encourage early diagnosis in a primary care context. Both viruses can lead to liver cirrhosis and cancer, with possible fatal outcomes. Chronic viral hepatitis B and C is known as the ‘silent epidemic’, as both viruses can be asymptomatic for decades, and only present once the liver is greatly damaged and could be too late for treatment.
Amongst the Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities, the most common way to contract hepatitis B is through mother to child transmission (MTCT) at birth; for hepatitis C it is through poor medical practices, most often back in the home country, and includes re-use of needles for injections, vaccinations and other blood-related medical procedures such as transfusions. Re-using razors for shaving and haircutting is also a risk factor for transmitting hepatitis C. For the Muslim community, particular care must be taken around the head-shaving ceremony for babies, circumcision, and preparation for Hajj and Umrah.
Click here for more information and background research.
 Public Health England (2013) Hepatitis C in the UK: 2013 Report p8 http://www.hpa.org.uk/webc/HPAwebFile/HPAweb_C/1317139502302
 Health Protection Agency (2006) Migrant Health: A Baseline Report, Chapter 4: Hepatitis B p62 http://www.hpa.org.uk/webc/HPAwebFile/HPAweb_C/1202115606638
 G Uddin et al (2009) ‘Prevalence of chronic viral hepatitis in people of south Asian ethnicity living in England…’ Journal of Viral Hepatitis, p3
Maslaha translates from the Arabic as ‘for the common good’ and this is the driving force behind all our work.
Established in 2006, Maslaha is an award-winning organisation creating new, practical resources for social issues affecting Muslim communities. We do this through projects which involve building a network of collaborators, and creating products (such as DVDs, websites and exhibitions) which help to improve a service, change attitudes and disseminate information.
In February 2012 Maslaha was recognised as one of Britain’s 50 New Radicals, a joint initiative by NESTA and The Observer newspaper to find examples of inspirational social pioneers improving the lives of people and communities across the country in radical and creative ways.
Barts Charity is an independent charity which works closely with Barts Health NHS Trust, its six hospitals and related healthcare services.
Based in the City and East End of London, they focus on funding innovative projects to transform people's lives in these areas. The Charity funded this project.