Hepatitis C treatment can be provided successfully at syringe programme sites

infohep.org, 18 April 2017

Administering direct-acting antiviral therapy for people who inject drugs at a syringe exchange site led to high sustained response rates in a pilot study in New York City. Expanding treatment for this population could reduce hepatitis C virus (HCV) transmission and ultimately help eliminate hepatitis C as a public health threat.

AMA calls for needle and syringe programs (NSPs) to be introduced in prisons

Australian Medical Association, January 9th 2017

The AMA has called for needle and syringe programs (NSPs) to be introduced in prisons and other custodial settings, to reduce the spread of Blood Borne Viruses (BBVs) including hepatitis B and C, and HIV.

AMA President, Dr Michael Gannon, said today that prevalence of BBVs is significantly higher in prisons, yet custodial facilities provide a unique opportunity to protect the health of inmates.

A new AMA position statement also warns against making transmission of a BBV a crime, and calls for specific resourcing and management of HLTV-1, a relatively unknown BBV that affects Aboriginal people in central Australia.

Read more here

Annual Report of Trends in Behaviour: Viral hepatitis

UNSW Centre for Social Research in Health, October 2016

The Annual Report of Trends in Behaviour presents data from a selection of the behavioural and social research conducted by the Centre for Social Research in Health. The report focuses in particular on studies assessing trends over time or addressing emerging issues.

The Viral Hepatitis Supplement covers a few key issues which stand out  in relation to viral hepatitis.

 

 

Prisons need better drug treatment programs to control infectious diseases

The Conversation, July 15, 2016 10.56am AEST

Worldwide, around 30 million people enter and leave prison each year. Of these people, around 4.5 million have hepatitis C, almost 1 million have HIV and 1.5 million have hepatitis B infections.

In many countries, prisons are underfunded and overcrowded, and injecting drug use is common. Those who enter prison uninfected are at risk of becoming infected, as few countries provide the range of prevention programs required to halt transmission inside.

Once detained, prisoners are often denied access to life-saving treatment for these infections.

  • Read more here
  • Read HIV, prisoners, and human rights from The Lancet here

 

Richmond traders support mobile injecting centre plan

The Age, May 17, 2016 – 4:39PM

Ice and heroin dealing on Richmond’s drug-ravaged Victoria Street has become so flagrant that local traders are now supporting a proposal for a needle van.

In return for their support, the traders are demanding the CCTV cameras offered by the state government – and long rejected by the local council.

Read more here

To tackle hepatitis C, we need to close the justice gap

Croakey, Dec 22, 2015

Health Minister Sussan Ley’s announcement of PBS listing for new treatments for hepatitis C has been welcomed by Hepatitis NSW as “brilliant news”. Given the high rates of hepatitis C among people in prisons, it is significant that the Government has agreed to fund these medicines for prisoners.

However, tackling hepatitis C will also require public health interventions such as the introduction of needle and syringe programs into correctional centres, and concerted efforts to reduce the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in prisons, according to Heather McCormack from Hepatitis NSW.

Read more here