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  • Online resource aims to promote better MSK health to prevent against later problems

    Online resource aims to promote better MSK health to prevent against later problems

    Thursday, 07 December 2017 17:40
  • Public Accounts Committee calls for ‘end to complacency’ over clinical negligence costs

    Public Accounts Committee calls for ‘end to complacency’ over clinical negligence costs

    Tuesday, 05 December 2017 11:01
  • Department of Health sets out information on plans for GP indemnity scheme

    Department of Health sets out information on plans for GP indemnity scheme

    Monday, 04 December 2017 15:26
  • Concerns raised that new NICE asthma guidelines conflict with BTS/SIGN approach

    Concerns raised that new NICE asthma guidelines conflict with BTS/SIGN approach

    Friday, 01 December 2017 10:38
  • Bowel cancer screening uptake falls in England

    Bowel cancer screening uptake falls in England

    Tuesday, 28 November 2017 09:56

A Resized Hep C Image cbAugust 1 2017

A campaign to encourage more hepatitis C testing has been launched to help eliminate the virus as a hidden public health threat.

Public Health England wants more people to take up the offer of free hepatitis C testing, whether or not they have symptoms. A poster campaign is inviting people to take a quick 6-item quiz to find out whether they might have been exposed to the hepatitis C virus; if so they advised to seek testing.

“Around 200,000 people in the UK are thought to be living with chronic hepatitis C (hep C) infection, with a substantial proportion unaware they have it. Many will be over the age of 50 and may have no or few specific symptoms,” said PHE. Being aware of hep C status means treatment can be started sooner, and the greater the chance of avoiding long term complications.

People should have a hep C test if they:

  • received a blood transfusion before September 1991, or a blood product before 1986 in the UK;
  • shared needles or other equipment to inject drugs, even if it was just once or many years ago;
  • had medical or dental treatment abroad in unsterile conditions;
  • had a tattoo, piercing, acupuncture, electrolysis, or semi-permanent make up using equipment that may have been unsterilized;
  • had unprotected sex with someone who has, or might have, hep C;
  • shared a razor or toothbrush with someone who has, or might have, hep C.

Dr Helen Harris, Clinical Scientist in PHE’s Immunisation, Hepatitis and Blood Safety Department, said: “We are hopeful that the increased access to improved treatments over recent years has contributed to the latest fall in deaths from severe hep C related liver disease. This, combined with interventions to prevent infection in the first place, can help us to achieve our vision of eliminating hep C as a major public health threat in the UK.”

PHE made the announcement alongside publishing its annual report ‘Hepatitis C in the UK 2017’ on July 28, World Hepatitis Day.

Links:
PHE announcement  
Hepatitis C – Quiz: ‘Could you have hepatitis C?’ 
PHE: Hepatitis C in England 2017                
PHE Vaccine Update July 2017   

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