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Do You Need the Hepatitis B Vaccine?

A List of People Most At-Risk for Hepatitis B

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Updated June 27, 2014

The hepatitis B vaccine offers safe and long-term protection from exposure to the hepatitis B virus. While anyone can benefit from the vaccine and anyone who wishes to become immune can become vaccinated, some people are strongly encouraged to be vaccinated against hepatitis B. Basically, these are people who, through their work, lifestyle or medical history, are at a greater risk of being exposed to the virus or developing complications. Here's the list of people, organized in categories, who really need to be vaccinated according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

All infants, children and teenagers younger than 19 years of age.

People who come in to direct contact with possibly infected blood, including:

  • Those who share needles, syringes, or works
  • Those who have sex with multiple partners outside of a committed relationship
  • Those who have sex with someone who has hepatitis B
  • Men who have sex with men
  • Those who work in healthcare or public safety in a way that puts them at risk for exposure to hepatitis B

People with certain medical problems, including:

  • Those with chronic liver disease
  • Those with advanced kidney disease
  • Those who are predialysis, hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis and home dialysis patients
  • Those with HIV infection
  • Those who live in facilities for developmentally disabled persons
  • Those with a sexually transmitted disease

People who might be exposed to hepatitis B virus, including:

  • Travelers who travel to places with moderate or high rates of hepatitis B infection
  • Those who have close household contact with someone who has hepatitis B
  • Those who are in correctional facilities

Source:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. July 19, 2008. Viral Hepatitis B.

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