National Hepatitis C strategy 2011-2014

Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10147/243033
Title:
National Hepatitis C strategy 2011-2014
Authors:
Health Service Executive (HSE)
Publisher:
Health Service Executive (HSE)
Issue Date:
4-Sep-2012
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10147/243033
Item Type:
Report
Language:
en
Description:
Hepatitis C is a disease of the liver caused by a virus identified in 1989 as the hepatitis C virus. Hepatitis C is a communicable disease that is spread from person to person by contact with infected blood or body fluids. Intravenous drug use and receipt of unscreened blood or blood products are well established as the major risk factors for the acquisition of hepatitis C infection. In comparison with HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) and hepatitis B, the virus is much less likely to be spread through sexual contact, household contact or by motherto- child transmission. The distribution of hepatitis C globally differs by time, place and person. In Ireland those at risk of infection are most often socially excluded groups such as drug users, the homeless and immigrants from endemic countries. Hepatitis C is most commonly an asymptomatic infection both in the acute and early chronic stages. The acute stage of infection tends to go unnoticed therefore it is often difficult to establish when someone became infected. Chronic infection occurs in 70-80% of adults acutely infected. This compares to hepatitis B where chronic infection occurs in only 10% of acutely infected adults. Some non-specific symptoms of chronic disease may occur e.g. ongoing flu-like symptoms, joint pains, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, altered bowel habit, mood swings and insomnia. Complications of chronic hepatitis C include cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer. Certain factors have been identified that affect disease progression, e.g. alcohol intake, co-infection with HIV or hepatitis B, super-infection with hepatitis A and older age at infection. Hepatitis C can now be treated with anti-viral agents, most commonly as a combination of two different agents. Treatment is not without significant side-effects. This can affect the uptake of treatment and also adherence and compliance. In Ireland by 1994 it became apparent that individuals had become infected with hepatitis C and HIV through transfusion of infected blood or through administration of infected blood products in the State. In 2003, a working group was established by the then Eastern Regional Health Authority (ERHA) to set out key recommendations to enhance prevention, treatment and surveillance of hepatitis C among all infected people in the Eastern Region. In 2004, following on from a year long consultative process, a regional hepatitis C strategy document was produced. It was developed in partnership with the statutory, voluntary and community sectors. Some of the recommendations of that report have been implemented, but many have not. The report was never published. Following the establishment of the HSE (Health Service Executive) a working group was convened under the auspices of Social Inclusion in 2007 with the objective of developing a national strategy for hepatitis C in Ireland. This document reflects the outcome of the group’s efforts. Implementation of this strategy will require considered, coordinated effort, utilising existing governance and operational structures. Ongoing monitoring and reporting of progress will be integral to this process. Recommended actions will be progressed on a phased, prioritised basis, with those that are deemed budget neutral or cost effective taking precedence in implementation.
Keywords:
PUBLIC HEALTH; HEPATITIS C

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorHealth Service Executive (HSE)en_GB
dc.date.accessioned2012-09-11T13:36:10Z-
dc.date.available2012-09-11T13:36:10Z-
dc.date.issued2012-09-04-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10147/243033-
dc.descriptionHepatitis C is a disease of the liver caused by a virus identified in 1989 as the hepatitis C virus. Hepatitis C is a communicable disease that is spread from person to person by contact with infected blood or body fluids. Intravenous drug use and receipt of unscreened blood or blood products are well established as the major risk factors for the acquisition of hepatitis C infection. In comparison with HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) and hepatitis B, the virus is much less likely to be spread through sexual contact, household contact or by motherto- child transmission. The distribution of hepatitis C globally differs by time, place and person. In Ireland those at risk of infection are most often socially excluded groups such as drug users, the homeless and immigrants from endemic countries. Hepatitis C is most commonly an asymptomatic infection both in the acute and early chronic stages. The acute stage of infection tends to go unnoticed therefore it is often difficult to establish when someone became infected. Chronic infection occurs in 70-80% of adults acutely infected. This compares to hepatitis B where chronic infection occurs in only 10% of acutely infected adults. Some non-specific symptoms of chronic disease may occur e.g. ongoing flu-like symptoms, joint pains, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, altered bowel habit, mood swings and insomnia. Complications of chronic hepatitis C include cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer. Certain factors have been identified that affect disease progression, e.g. alcohol intake, co-infection with HIV or hepatitis B, super-infection with hepatitis A and older age at infection. Hepatitis C can now be treated with anti-viral agents, most commonly as a combination of two different agents. Treatment is not without significant side-effects. This can affect the uptake of treatment and also adherence and compliance. In Ireland by 1994 it became apparent that individuals had become infected with hepatitis C and HIV through transfusion of infected blood or through administration of infected blood products in the State. In 2003, a working group was established by the then Eastern Regional Health Authority (ERHA) to set out key recommendations to enhance prevention, treatment and surveillance of hepatitis C among all infected people in the Eastern Region. In 2004, following on from a year long consultative process, a regional hepatitis C strategy document was produced. It was developed in partnership with the statutory, voluntary and community sectors. Some of the recommendations of that report have been implemented, but many have not. The report was never published. Following the establishment of the HSE (Health Service Executive) a working group was convened under the auspices of Social Inclusion in 2007 with the objective of developing a national strategy for hepatitis C in Ireland. This document reflects the outcome of the group’s efforts. Implementation of this strategy will require considered, coordinated effort, utilising existing governance and operational structures. Ongoing monitoring and reporting of progress will be integral to this process. Recommended actions will be progressed on a phased, prioritised basis, with those that are deemed budget neutral or cost effective taking precedence in implementation.en_GB
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherHealth Service Executive (HSE)en_GB
dc.subjectPUBLIC HEALTHen_GB
dc.subjectHEPATITIS Cen_GB
dc.titleNational Hepatitis C strategy 2011-2014en_GB
dc.typeReporten
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