Hepatitis C presents a serious health threat worldwide. Some 150 million individuals are currently living with the virus, and nearly four million people become infected every year.
Hepatitis C is particularly devastating in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, where infection is strongly correlated with injection drug use. Yet, the cost of treatment remains prohibitive to most people in the region. Lack of effective treatment not only causes serious harm to individuals, it directly impacts the ability of countries to respond to the growing HIV epidemic.
This report produced by the Access to Essential Medicines Initiative of the Open Society Public Health Program seeks to help advocates expand hepatitis C treatment in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.
The report covers the following topics:
- Basic information about hepatitis C, including prevalence, means of transmission, disease progression, and health consequences
- The double impact of hepatitis and HIV coinfection
- Hepatitis testing and barriers to identifying infection
- Hepatitis treatments and availability of medicines
- Strategies for reducing the cost of treatment
- Barriers to treatment for active drug users
- Building civil society advocacy focused on hepatitis
The report is available in English and Russian.