Figures published by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) show the number of notifications of the infection rose by 9% last year — up from 487 cases in 2016 to 532.
The HPSC said the prevalence of hepatitis B in the general population here remained low at less than 1%, which is similar to most other northern European countries.
The vast majority of hepatitis B cases notified in Ireland are chronically infected, most of whom have migrated to Ireland from hepatitis B endemic countries,” said the HPSC.
It said most cases occurred in defined risk groups, including people with multiple sexual partners, sexual or household contact with infected persons, people who inject drugs, and people born in countries with medium or high rates of hepatitis B infection.
Despite the 9% increase in notifications of the disease last year, the HPSC said it was similar to numbers reported in 2015.
Source: Seán McCárthaigh, Irish Examiner, 30th October 2018