‘I’m over the moon!’: patient-perceived outcomes of hepatitis C treatment

I’m over the moon!’: patient-perceived outcomes of hepatitis C treatment

Davoud Pourmarzi, Andrew Smirnov, Lisa Hall, Gerard FitzGerald, and Tony Rahman

Australian Journal of Primary Health 26(4) 319-324 https://doi.org/10.1071/PY20013

Submitted: 22 January 2020  Accepted: 29 April 2020   Published: 25 June 2020

Abstract

Understanding patient-perceived outcomes is crucial for assessing the effectiveness and acceptability of hepatitis C virus (HCV) treatment. This study aimed to explore patient-perceived outcomes of receiving direct-acting antivirals (DAAs). This study was a part of a mixed-methods case study of the Prince Charles Hospital program for improving access to HCV treatment in community settings. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews with nine patients who were in different stages of their treatment for HCV. The participants were recruited using purposive sampling. All interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed using thematic analysis. Patients emphasised ‘having more energy’ when reporting improvements in their physical health following treatment. They also reported a newly developed sense of freedom and hope. Improved physical and mental health empowered them to start a healthy lifestyle and to practise self-protection from the risk of re-infection. Patients highlighted their desire to help other patients to receive treatment, which was connected to their experience of the services that they received and their perceived health outcomes. Patients expect and experience various outcomes that are related to the physical, psychological and social aspects of living with, and being cured of HCV. Emphasis on the short-term outcomes of receiving HCV treatment may improve HCV treatment uptake and adherence rates.