Sindh health secretary Syed Hashim Raza Zaidi said that more than 300 beauticians in Karachi and Hyderabad would be vaccinated for hepatitis B and C as one in every 10 women who visits salons is infected by hepatitis according to a study.
The disease is rapidly increasing in the country due to the contaminated equipment at beauty parlours, speakers said at a seminar titled ‘Awareness about Prevention from Hepatitis’ in the Dow University of Health Sciences organised by the Health Foundation.
The study, which started at the beginning of the year, took three months to complete. It reviewed practices of workers and owners of about 250 parlours in the city. Zaidi said the screening and training of the beauticians would help curb the spread of the fatal disease, especially if habits like washing hands are emphasised.
Health Foundation’s Dr Sehar Qaiser elucidated that septic apparatus is being used at most beauty parlours and all the beauticians at the seminar were urged to get registered so that their screening can be started soon.
Experts also warned men as hepatitis can also spread by reusing razors at barber shops.
A speaker at the event, Dr Saad Niaz, listed prevention methods that including using razors and blades once, cleaning multiple-use utensils properly and using disposable items where possible.
Sindh Hepatitis Control Programme manager Dr Majeed Chutto said pamphlets on hepatitis prevention would be distributed in beauty parlours across Karachi and Hyderabad to create awareness.
With additional input from PPI
Published in The Express Tribune, March 16th, 2011.