Hepatitis B

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

Find Hep B Testing, Care and Treatment

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
(347) 326-2075

Seventh Avenue Family Health Center at NYU Langone
5008 7th Avenue
(718) 210-1030

Charles B Wang Community Health Center — Manhattan
268 Canal Street
(212) 379-6996

Bellevue Hospital Center — Hepatitis Clinic
462 First Avenue
(212) 263-6804

Charles B Wang Community Health Center — Flushing
136-26 37th Avenue, Flushing
(718) 886-1200

Brightpoint Health
57 Bay Street
(855) 681-8700

 

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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Hep B Prevention

  • Get all three doses of the hepatitis B vaccine.
  • Do not share drug use supplies, such as needles, syringes, cotton, rinse water, cookers, spoons, straws or pipes. You can get clean needles at many locations in the city.
  • Don't share or reuse medical supplies, such as diabetic needles and finger stick devices.
  • Have safer sex. Use condoms and avoid sexual activity that involves the possibility of blood exposure. You can get free NYC condoms.
  • Do not share personal items (razors, clippers, toothbrushes, etc.) that could have blood on them.
  • Only get tattoos and piercings in a licensed business, and be sure that new sterile equipment is used.
  • Clean blood spills immediately with one part bleach and 10 parts water.

Additional Resources

More Information