Background: Hepatitis B and C has gained a prime importance because 240 million people are infected by hepatitis B virus (HBV) and 150 million people are infected by hepatitis C virus (HCV) worldwide. Present study was aimed to find out frequency of hepatitis B & C and associated risk factors among fresh recruited police soldier.
Methodology: Cross sectional study which consist of 100 fresh recruit police soldiers from Muzaffarabad police academy Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan during their training session between December 2017 & January 2018. Hepatitis B surface Antigen (HBsAg) and Anti Hepatitis C Virus (Anti-HCV) antibody were detected by using Immuno Chromatographic Technique (ICT) and further confirmed through quantitative Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA). HBV DNA & HCV RNA were amplified, and genotyping of HCV was done through multiplex PCR. Data were statistically analyzed through GraphPad Prism (Version 5.0).
Results: We found 11% HBsAg positive individuals and 4% anti-HCV positive individuals in ICT method which reduced after ELISA confirmation and reached 8% for HBsAg and 2% for anti-HCV and all these HBsAg and anti-HCV individuals were found confirmed for HBV and HCV through quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR). From the 2(2%) HCV positive individuals, we found 1 individual positive for 1a genotype and 1 individual positive for 3a genotype. In the age group of 25 to 27 years we found highest prevalence of both HBsAg (23.8%) and anti-HCV (9.5%). We found the blood transfusion (p=0.0007) and visit to dentist (p=<0.0001) as significant risk factors regarding spread of hepatitis B and C in the studied population.
Conclusion and Recommendations: Eleven percent HBsAg and four percent anti-HCV positivity among police soldiers is a serious health concern, and the higher authorities should make a proper hepatitis B and C screening set up for the police staff after every 06 months during their service.
Keywords: Health of Police Staff; Police Soldiers; HBV; HCV