Can a pregnant woman give hepatitis to her baby?

Yes. A pregnant woman can spread the hepatitis virus to her baby at the time of birth. This can be prevented by treating hepatitis B during pregnancy and by administration of hepatitis B antibody to the baby immediately after delivery.

Many babies infected with hepatitis B develop long-term liver problems. All newborn babies should be given the vaccine for hepatitis at birth and during their first year of life.

How can I protect myself from hepatitis B?

  • Get the hepatitis B vaccine.
  • Use a condom during sex.
  • Don't share needles to take drugs.
  • Practice good personal hygiene.
  • Don't use an infected person's personal items.

Who should get the vaccine?

  • All newborn babies.
  • People who are exposed to infected blood or body fluids of friends or family members.
  • People who use needles to take recreational drugs.
  • All people who have sex with more than one person.
  • All healthcare providers.
  • People working in day care centers and institutions caring for children and prisoners.

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