Health project launched

Pictured (from left) are health worker Benny Cheng, Mildred Zimunya, Piu Ling Glass and Trish Tougher (NHS).
Pictured (from left) are health worker Benny Cheng, Mildred Zimunya, Piu Ling Glass and Trish Tougher (NHS).

An innovative new project has been launched in Lanarkshire to support local Chinese communities to challenge hepatitis B and other blood borne viruses (BBV).

The Chinese Health Project, which is being delivered by charity Waverley Care in partnership with NHS Lanarkshire and the Lanarkshire BBV Network, will work with Chinese community groups and businesses to raise awareness of the condition and support people to access testing.

While the scale of the issue in Scotland is unknown, research in England has identified that Chinese people are seven times more likely to be affected by hepatitis B than the general population.

Mildred Zimunya, Waverley Care Senior Manager, said: “We know that Chinese people are disproportionately affected by hepatitis B and we want to work with the community to understand and overcome the barriers that prevent this from changing.

“We can also talk to people who are at greater risk of hepatitis B about getting vaccinated.”

Piu Ling Glass, chair of the Lanarkshire Chinese Association, added: “Many people find it difficult to access local services because of cultural and language barriers. There is also a lack of appropriate information that addresses the specific needs of the Chinese community.

The Chinese Health Project can help to bridge this gap. I’m looking forward to working with Waverley Care and NHS Lanarkshire to make the project a success.”