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Screening Inmates for Hepatitis C Benefits General Community: Study

Posted 23 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Nov. 23, 2015 – A prison-based hepatitis C screening and treatment program could benefit the broader community, researchers suggest. Besides reducing the spread of hepatitis C after prisoners are released, "universal [hepatitis C] testing and treatment in prisons would reduce outcomes of advanced [hepatitis C] such as liver cancer, end-stage liver disease and death among prisoners," said study senior author Jagpreet Chhatwal, of Massachusetts General Hospital's Institute for Technology Assessment in Boston. "We now have highly effective treatments for [hepatitis C], so we wanted to know the impact of providing routine testing and treatment to inmates, a group in which the infection is highly prevalent," Chhatwal said in a hospital news release. More than 1 percent of the U.S. population has hepatitis C, but the virus affects more than 17 percent of prisoners, the researchers ... Read more

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