Hepatitis B knowledge, testing and vaccination levels in Chinese immigrants to British Columbia, Canada

T. Gregory Hislop, Chong Teh, Angeline Low, Lin Li, Shin-Ping Tu, Yutaka Yasui, Vicky M. Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Background: Little is known about hepatitis B (HBV) and liver cancer control in Chinese in Canada. Liver cancer, a significant health problem in Asia, is preventable and can be controlled through HBV blood testing, vaccination, and community education about HBV. Objective: The overall goal was to increase HBV testing and vaccination in Chinese adult Canadians. The objective was to present findings on HBV testing, vaccination and knowledge in Chinese immigrants. Methods: 504 randomly selected Chinese adult immigrants residing in Vancouver responded to the survey which examined HBV blood testing and vaccination practices, HBV knowledge levels and socio-demographic characteristics. Face-to-face interviews were conducted in Cantonese, Mandarin, or English. Results: 57% of participants reported that they had received HBV blood testing, 38% had been vaccinated, and 6% were known HBV carriers. There were gender differences, with lower rates of testing and vaccination, and higher chronic carrier rates, among men. Over 80% knew that HBV can be spread by asymptomatic persons and can cause cirrhosis and liver cancer. However, confusion existed about the routes of HBV transmission. Interpretation: A sizeable proportion of Chinese adult immigrants in Vancouver have not been tested or vaccinated for HBV. Knowledge level, especially about routes of HBV transmission, was low. This is a concern, given that chronic HBV infection is the most common cause of liver cancer in Asian North Americans. To improve knowledge, reduce risk of infection and the burden of chronic infection and its sequelae in immigrant populations, continuing educational efforts are needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)125-129
Number of pages5
JournalCanadian Journal of Public Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Asian continental ancestry group
  • Attitudes
  • Emigration and immigration
  • Health knowledge
  • Hepatitis B
  • Liver neoplasms
  • Practices

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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