Based on the available 2017 data, the total number of deaths reported in the European Union (EU) was over 4 million, of those about 5 500 were attributed to viral hepatitis. While men and women are almost equally affected, those aged over 65 are most likely to be affected as they represent nearly two-thirds of these deaths.
Death rate from hepatitis highest in Italy, lowest in Finland
To make a sound comparison between countries, the absolute numbers of deaths across countries need to be adjusted to the size and structure of the population.
With 33 deaths from viral hepatitis per million inhabitants, Italy registered the highest rate among the EU Member States in 2017. It was followed by Latvia (31 deaths per million inhabitants) and Austria (19).
At the opposite end of the scale, the lowest rates were recorded in Finland (with less than 1 death due to hepatitis per million inhabitants), followed by Slovenia (1) and the Netherlands (2).
When looking at regional data (NUTS2), Sardinia (Italy) with 53 deaths from viral hepatitis per million inhabitants was the most affected region in the EU in 2017, followed by other Italian regions: Apulia (51 deaths from viral hepatitis per million inhabitants), Basilicata and Campania (both with 49 deaths from viral hepatitis per million inhabitants), Calabria (42) and Sicily (40).
At the other end of the scale, the regions with 0.5 deaths or less from viral hepatitis per million inhabitants were South-West in Bulgaria, North-West in Romania and North-East in Czechia.
Source data: hlth_cd_asdr2
This news item marks World Hepatitis Day (28 July).
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