HCPLive Network

Victories and Challenges in Hepatitis Testing: New USPSTF Guidelines and the Affordable Care Act

 
During a seminar at the 2013 United States Conference on AIDS, Ryan Clary presented information about how the lessons learned from HIV advocacy translate into viral hepatitis advocacy. Clary is Director of Policy and Programs at the National Viral Hepatitis Roundtable, a coalition of about 200 organizations across the country fighting on behalf of people with hepatitis B and C.
 
Around five million Americans have hepatitis B or C. “The really scary part is that up to 70 percent of these people don’t know they have it,” said Clary. Since the disease often isn’t accompanied by any symptoms early on, many people present with symptoms of very late stage liver cancer. More than 15,000 people die of hepatitis B or C in the US every year.
 
Clary explained that the demographics behind hepatitis C are important, since 75% of cases are found in people born between 1945 and 1965 (ie, the Baby Boomers). African Americans, Asians, Latinos, people with HIV, veterans, prisoners, and homeless people are also affected in greater numbers. Of people with HIV in the US, about 25% are also affected with hepatitis C, and about 10% are infected with hepatitis B. This is one of the main reasons liver failure is a major cause of death in people with HIV.
 
According to Cleary, there are many similarities between the challenges faced by people who have HIV and those who have viral hepatitis. Both groups face social stigma, and may or may not know their status, and the disease disproportionately affects similar communities. Many services and clinics have begun integrating HIV and hepatitis treatment.


Further Reading
In remarks delivered at the American Academy of Family Physicians 2014 Assembly, HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell spoke about the ongoing response to the Ebola outbreak, improving health care delivery, the Affordable Care Act, and the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative.
Seniors who wear their dentures when they sleep are at increased risk for pneumonia, according to a study published online Oct. 7 in the Journal of Dental Research.
New York and New Jersey health officials announced today that all health care workers returning from caring for patients in Ebola hot zones in West Africa will have to go into quarantine for 21 days. The new policy is stricter than the current one recommended by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that calls for health monitoring for 21 days. It was that policy that allowed Craig Spencer, MD to be out and about a day before he was diagnosed with Ebola Thursday and rushed to city-run Bellevue Hospital Center in Manhattan.
A pattern of sleep disturbance is a risk factor for depression and suicide and also increases the risk of cancer, infection, hypertension, weight gain, heart disease, diabetes, inflammation, osteoporosis, chronic pain, and arrhythmias. It can also have a significant negative impact on cognition and creativity.
There is little variation in risk-adjusted hospital readmission rates after colorectal surgery, according to a study published online Oct. 22 in JAMA Surgery.
Cardiovascular disease is a long-term complication of type 1 diabetes mellitus, and more attention toward management of its associated risk factors and modifiers is urged in a scientific statement published in the October issue of Diabetes Care.
For patients with lumbosacral disc herniation, neurophysiological tests together with neuroimaging and clinical examination allow for accurate preoperative assessment of injury, according to a study published in the Oct. 1 issue of Spine.
More Reading
In remarks delivered at the American Academy of Family Physicians 2014 Assembly, HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell spoke about the ongoing response to the Ebola outbreak, improving health care delivery, the Affordable Care Act, and the Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative.