• epidemiology;
  • hepatitis B virus;
  • prevention;
  • transmission;
  • vaccine

Summary.  The concept of a hepatitis B vaccine was first introduced into China in 1978. China has been one of the first two developing countries to enact the universal hepatitis B vaccination programme for newborn babies in 1992, and has made tremendous achievements in the control of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection since then. China now has both low and high endemic regions regarding HBV prevalence co-existing. Although China’s drive to stop HBV spread has resulted in changes in HBV epidemic patterns, for the eventual elimination HBV infection in China, it is important to understand the current status of its epidemiology and the aspects of HBV transmission in different regions. More efforts are needed to improve and develop strategies for the control of HBV infection in China, particularly after implementing the policy of universal HBV immunization for all newborns.