Hepatitis B is a liver disease caused by infection with the hepatitis B virus. It can range in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a lifelong serious illness. Hepatitis B is usually spread when blood, semen, or another body fluid from a person infected with the hepatitis B virus enters the body of someone who is not infected.
Rates of screening for hepatitis B in Veterans who received VA care in calendar year 2013 were low at approximately 22 percent and ranged from 44 - 90 percent in identified high-risk populations. Hepatitis B infection rate for Veterans tested for hepatitis B were low at about one percent overall and ranged from 0.8 - 5.1 percent in identified high-risk populations.