I am writing in response to the article "Unhygienic edibles spreading hepatitis", published June 23, 2011 in The Nation. The article contains a serious error and one that could have been easily avoided through a simple Google search. The article states that "hepatitis B and C is rapidly spreading among the masses here mainly because of unhygienic food". Hepatitis B and C are blood borne viruses that cannot be spread via food. Of the 5 viral hepatitis strains known to us only two of them are linked to food. That is, only two of the viruses follow fecal-oral transmission route. They are hepatitis A and hepatitis E which are transmitted person-to-person by ingestion of contaminated food or water or through direct contact with an infectious person. This misinformation is important to correct in order to prevent stigma and discrimination against the many people in Pakistan living with hepatitis B & C. Blood borne viruses such as hepatitis B & C cannot be spread by sharing cups, plates, food or by touching or hugging. DR ANNA OLSEN, Australia, June 24.