February Newsletter

ISSUE NUMBER  Thirty-Two• February

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HHS National Viral Hepatitis Action Plan 2017-2020

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has updated the action plan for addressing viral hepatitis in the United States. The updated plan outlines strategies to achieve four major goals between the years 2017-2020 and indicators to help track progress. The goals include:

1. Prevent new viral hepatitis infections

2. Reduce deaths and improve the health of people living with viral hepatitis

3. Reduce health disparities related to viral hepatitis

4. Coordinate, monitor, and report on implementation of viral hepatitis activities 

To find out more about the strategies and indicators related to these goals, click here.


Hepatitis Services Survey

Does your organization provide viral hepatitis services? If so, please take 10 minutes to complete the Hepatitis Provider Inventory Survey. The information collected in the survey will be used to determine what viral hepatitis and supportive services are provided by each participating organization, the specific needs of the organization, and to gather information to update the Indiana State Department of Health Viral Hepatitis Resource Guide. Click the link below to take the survey. Please feel free to forward to partners.


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New Hepatitis B Treatment

The U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a new treatment for hepatitis B. Tenofovir alafenamide (Vemlidy) matches the older tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (Viread) for antiviral activity against hepatitis B. 

Viread is one of the most effective antiviral drugs for hepatitis, but it can cause bone loss and can lead to kidney problems. Vemlidy is a once daily, 25 mg treatment that is less than one-tenth the dose of Viread, which means less drug exposure for the kidneys and bones.

To read more, click here.

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Hepatitis C Treatment Consultation Report

In September 2016, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services hosted a meeting with multiple healthcare experts and stakeholders to identify barriers to accessing hepatitis C treatment and potential strategies for ensuring that people who are infected can get the recommended treatment. The meeting focused on the perspectives, data, and experiences that inform health care policies and practices. The report from the Expert Consultation on the Evidence for Early Hepatitis C Treatment in the United States has been released and can be found on the HHS website.

To view the full report and slides from the meeting click here.

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Curing Hepatitis C Among Those with Cirrhosis

Researchers in France conducted a prospective study to investigate the effects of sustained viral response (SVR) on outcomes of patients with hepatitis C virus infection and compensated cirrhosis.

Data was collected from 1,323 patients receiving care at 35 clinical centers in France from 2006 to 2012. All participants were treated for hepatitis C, first with interferon and then, if that failed, with direct-acting antiviral therapy.

After a median follow-up period of 58.2 months, 668 (50.5 percent) of the participants achieved an SVR. SVR was associated with a decreased incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma and hepatic decompensation. Patients with SVRs also had a lower risk of cardiovascular events and bacterial infections. Metabolic features were associated with a higher risk of hepatocellular carcinoma in patients with SVRs, but not in patients with viremia. SVR affected overall mortality and death from liver-related and non-liver-related causes. Similar results were obtained in a propensity score-matched population.

To read the study abstract, click here.

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Hepatitis Resources


The CDC has released AtlasPlus, a tool that gives users the ability to create tables, maps, and charts using 15 years of data for HIV, viral hepatitis, sexually transmitted diseases (STD), and tuberculosis (TB). AtlasPlus offers significant upgrades from the original version of Atlas including:

  • Easy, quick access to the latest data by county, state, or U.S. total
  • 2015 data for HIV, STDs, and TB; 2014 data for viral hepatitis
  • An upgrade to the Tables function (Based on user feedback, making it more intuitive to build tables based on the exact subset of the data users want to view.)
  • Improved chart capabilities such as line graphs by year, bar charts by states or counties, pie charts for sex, bar charts for age, race/ethnicity, transmission category (HIV), and country of birth (TB)
  • New ability to create two side-by-side maps or charts, e.g., compare two diseases, two race/ethnicity groups, or two age groups
  • Mobile access

Click here to visit the page.

HepCure Toolkit

The HepCure Toolkit is a free online support resource for hepatitis C providers and patients. The toolkit is comprised of three different components: a weekly tele-education webinar series, provider dashboard, and a patient app.

The Tele-Education Webinar Series is held every Tuesday from 4:30-5:30 p.m. EST and features many topics in hepatitis C. Continuing education credits (CME/CNE) are offered through attendance of the webinars. All of the webinars are archived for playback or download on HepCure's Tumblr page.

For further details, click here.

Viral Hepatitis Serology Training

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has training videos available for health professionals interested in understanding the meanings of viral hepatitis serologic markers and how to interpret test results. Participants will learn the different serologic tests for hepatitis A virus (HAV), hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV), hepatitis D virus (HDV), and hepatitis E virus (HEV). There are five separate videos, so participants can choose the training they want. Visit the following link to watch the videos:


HCV Advocate website

Hcvadvocate.org is a website supported by the Hepatitis C Support Project and includes   many free resources for anyone to utilize.  The website has links to fact sheets and news articles and educational materials. 

Check out the website by clicking here.

Immunization Action Coalition (IAC)

The IAC has many free handouts and facts sheets about hepatitis and many are available in multiple languages.  Check out their website at http://www.immunize.org/

A few handouts that are available…

o    Hepatitis B Facts: Testing and Vaccination http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p2110.pdf

o    If you, your parents, or your children were born in any of these places…http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p4170.pdf 

o    Hepatitis B information for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p4190.pdf


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