How is hepatitis C different from hepatitis A and B?

There is a vaccine for hepatitis A and B but not for hepatitis C.

Hepatitis A is transmitted when people ingest fecal matter usually through contaminated water, drinks or food. There is no treatment for hepatitis A but the infection usually clears on its own and the body becomes immune to the virus.

Hepatitis B can be spread when the blood, semen or vaginal fluid of a person who has the virus comes in contact with the blood of another person. For example, the virus can be passed during unprotected sex or the virus can pass to a baby during childbirth. It is one of the most widespread diseases and spreads easily from person to person. Most people who get Hepatitis B clear the virus on their own and their body becomes immune to the virus. Some experience a chronic infection. Treatment can help slow down and manage the virus, but will not clear it.

Vaccines to protect against hepatitis A and B are widely available in Canada. Ask your doctor or healthcare provider about getting vaccinated. Many people in Ontario can receive this vaccination for free.