Hepatitis B (hep B or HBV) is a virus that infects and can damage the liver. It is passed from one person to another when a body fluid infected with the hepatitis B virus, such as the blood or semen of an HBV-infected person, gets into another person's bloodstream. The infected fluid may enter through openings in the skin (punctures, cuts, sores) or through the mucosal membranes (nose, genitals). Hepatitis B can live outside of the body for at least seven days.
Hepatitis B can be acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term).
Chronic Hepatitis B can cause permanent damage to the liver and could lead to cirrhosis, liver failuer and liver cancer.
There is a vaccine to prevent hepatitis B — three doses provides full protection.
If you are pregnant, or thinking about having a baby, learn about hepatitis B and pregnancy
Whether you have health insurance or are uninsured, you can find free or low-cost hep B care and treatment, as well as extra support throughout the process.
Select your borough to find a Hep B testing, care and treatment center near you. Call to make an appointment.
Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center Family Wellness Center
1281 Franklin Avenue
Seventh Avenue Family Health Center at NYU Langone
5008 7th Avenue
Charles B Wang Community Health Center — Manhattan
268 Canal Street
Bellevue Hospital Center — Hepatitis Clinic
462 First Avenue
Charles B Wang Community Health Center — Flushing
136-26 37th Avenue, Flushing
57 Bay Street
For more information about hep B and the importance of getting tested, watch the Centers for Disease Control's public service announcement: No Warning Signs.
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