Hepatitis B and hepatitis C prevalence and treatment referral among Asian Americans undergoing community-based hepatitis screening

Am J Public Health. 2010 Apr 1;100 Suppl 1(Suppl 1):S118-24. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2009.162776. Epub 2010 Feb 10.


Objectives: We sought to identify cross-sectional hepatitis B virus (HBV) and HCV prevalence among Asian Americans at a community health fair and to assess referral rates.

Methods: We determined HBV prevalence with hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg), antibodies to hepatitis B core antigen (anti-HBc), and antibodies to hepatitis B surface antigen (anti-HBs). We determined HCV prevalence with hepatitis C antibodies. Successful referral occurred when participants with HBV or HCV were contacted, medically evaluated, and given contact information of liver specialists for care.

Results: Of 202 people screened, 118 were Asian Americans (65 Chinese and 39 Vietnamese). Twelve had chronic HBV with positive HBsAg. However, chronic HBV prevalence increased from 10.2% to 13.6% by concomitant HBsAg, anti-HBc, and anti-HBs testing. Prevalence of HCV was 6% overall but 15.4% among Vietnamese. Overall, 83% of patients with chronic HBV and 100% of patients with occult HBV or HCV were successfully referred.

Conclusions: Concomitant HBsAg, anti-HBc, and anti-HBs testing permits diagnosis of chronic, occult HBV infections missed by testing with HBsAg alone. Persons identified with HBV or HCV at community health fairs can be successfully referred.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Asian*
  • Community Health Services*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Hepatitis B / diagnosis*
  • Hepatitis B / drug therapy
  • Hepatitis B / epidemiology*
  • Hepatitis B Antigens / blood
  • Hepatitis B Antigens / immunology
  • Hepatitis C / diagnosis*
  • Hepatitis C / drug therapy
  • Hepatitis C / epidemiology*
  • Hepatitis C Antibodies / blood
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mass Screening*
  • Middle Aged
  • Referral and Consultation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Texas / epidemiology


  • Hepatitis B Antigens
  • Hepatitis C Antibodies