Jeffrey Caballero Named Vice-Chair of National Viral Hepatitis Roundtable
October 1, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
[Archive] Stacy Lavilla
Director of Communications
(510) 272-9536 x110
NVHR Executive Committee Aims for First-Ever Specific Viral Hepatitis & Liver Cancer Legislation in U.S. History
Oakland, CA—(October 1, 2009)—The National Viral Hepatitis Roundtable (NVHR), a coalition of public, private, and voluntary organizations dedicated to the prevention and reduction of viral hepatitis in the U.S., today announced Mr. Jeffrey Caballero as its new Executive Committee Vice-Chair. Mr. Caballero, executive director of the Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO), plans to aggressively pursue enactment of the first specific viral hepatitis legislation in this nation’s history during his yearlong term.
“I am honored to have been elected as the Vice-Chair of NVHR,” said Mr. Caballero. “This group has always represented hepatitis B and C advocates, and these election results are a move towards even greater inclusion, collaboration, and participation by all members of the hepatitis community. Concurrently, the new hepatitis legislation and expanded recognition of May as Hepatitis Awareness Month are tremendous opportunities to improve the way we think about and manage viral hepatitis in the US.”
Since forming in 2003, NVHR has worked to develop, implement and maintain a national strategy to eliminate viral hepatitis in the United States. This fall, hepatitis B and C advocates have collaborated to craft a combined bill that represents a first step towards building strong national plan to address viral hepatitis prevention, identification & referral for care. The bill focuses on increasing awareness, prevention, and getting more people tested to identify the overwhelming proportion of people who are unaware of their hepatitis infection (an estimated 6 million Americans have been infected and two-thirds have yet to be diagnosed).
At the helm of these efforts will be newly elected NVHR Chair, Lorren Sandt, executive director of the Caring Ambassadors Program based in Oregon City, Oregon. Members of the National Roundtable include leaders in viral hepatitis advocacy from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Medical Association, the Hepatitis B Foundation, among many others. NVHR and the Centers for Disease Control are cosponsoring an Institute of Medicine (IOM) study on prevention and control of viral hepatitis in the United States. A final report of the study’s findings is scheduled to be released by the IOM in December this year.
“The meteoric rise in liver cancer is directly connected to the large number of people living with hepatitis B or hepatitis C,” stressed Ms. Sandt. “I am very encouraged and excited to work with Jeff and the NVHR team to pass the Viral Hepatitis and Liver Cancer Prevention and Control Act of 2009 which is essential in preventing unnecessary liver cancer deaths.”
Mr. Caballero participates on numerous national committees that address issues affecting Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and other Pacific Islanders, such as tuberculosis, hepatitis B, diabetes, and cancer. Recently, he was a featured speaker on the topic of health care reform at the 2009 California Hepatitis Alliance meeting and also spoke at the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health’s 2009 World Hepatitis Day in Washington, DC.
NVHR is a coalition of public, private, and voluntary organizations dedicated to reducing the incidence of infection, morbidity, and mortality from viral hepatitis in the United States. For more information on NVHR, please visit www.nvhr.org
AAPCHO is a national association representing 27 community health organizations dedicated to promoting advocacy, collaboration and leadership that improves the health status and access of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and other Pacific Islanders in the United States. Since 1987, AAPCHO has advocated for policies and programs that improve the provision of health care services that are community driven, financially affordable, linguistically accessible, and culturally appropriate.
For more information on AAPCHO and its Guiding Principles and Values, please visit http://www.aapcho.org