The global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection
Pley CM., McNaughton AL., Matthews PC., Lourenço J.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus has resulted in a myriad of interventions with the urgent aim of reducing the public health impact of this virus. However, a wealth of evidence both from high-income and low-income countries is accruing on the broader consequences of such interventions on economic and public health inequalities, as well as on pre-existing programmes targeting endemic pathogens. We provide an overview of the impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on hepatitis B virus (HBV) programmes globally, focusing on the possible consequences for prevention, diagnosis and treatment. Ongoing disruptions to infrastructure, supply chains, services and interventions for HBV are likely to contribute disproportionately to the short-term incidence of chronic hepatitis B, providing a long-term source of onward transmission to future generations that threatens progress towards the 2030 elimination goals.