1 Dissemination of HCV Patient-Centered Outcomes Research - 2 Background: In the United States, nearly 4 million persons are estimated to be infected with 3 hepatitis C virus (HCV) with approximately 20,000 newly infected cases occurring each year.i,ii 4 Department of Health and Human Services has issued an action plan for the prevention, care 5 and treatment of viral hepatitis which aims to raise awareness of this silent epidemic and 6 reduce the number of new HCV infection cases, all in alignment with the Healthy People 2020 7 objectives.iii One major response is supported by recent research into the cost-effectiveness of 8 screening that has led the CDC to formulate new HCV screening guidelines that will call for the 9 testing of every person born 1945-1965. These new guidelines are expected to be released 10 later this year and will markedly increase HCV identification. 11 AHRQ has produced several complementary reviews focused on HCV screening, treatment, 12 and adherence to therapy. The rapid dissemination of this information to ID specialists is the 13 next critical step but requires resources to do so in a timely and effective manner. 14 The overarching goal of this program proposal is to reduce the morbidity and mortality 15 associated with HCV infection by expanding the capacity of ID providers to identify and treat 16 HCV infection. In order to achieve this goal, the IDSA's Hepatitis C Task Force will develop 17 educational programs and resources to assist ID specialists and fellows in the diagnosis, 18 management, and treatment of viral hepatitis. Specifically, the task force will (1) develop in- 19 depth training for ID specialists in the form of self-evaluation knowledge modules; (2) provide 20 training for ID fellows focused on the epidemiology, diagnosis, management, and treatment of 21 HCV, significantly expanding that which they may receive through their training programs; and 22 (3) provide outreach to the primary care community to promote HCV screening guidelines and 23 linkage to care following diagnosis. 24 This proposal will directly support the achievement of two of the Healthy People 2020 goals 25 related to hepatitis C virus - the goal of increasing the awareness of those infected and the goal 26 of decreasing the number of new infections. There is a high likelihood of success given the 27 timing of the rapid changes in the field of HCV and proven capability of IDSA to impact the 28 practice patterns of their membership through educational activities such as the specific 29 measures planned in this proposal. i Armstrong GL, Wasley A, Simard EP, McQuillan GM, Kuhnert WL, Alter MJ. The prevalence of hepatitis C virus infection in the United States, 1999 through 2002. Ann Intern Med 2006; 144:705-14. ii CDC. Surveillance for acute viral hepatitis-United States, 2008. Available at: www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/Statistics/2008Surveillance/index.htm. iii Combating the Silent Epidemic of Viral Hepatitis: Action Plan for Prevention, Care and Treatment of Viral Hepatitis. Department of Health & Human Services. May 12, 2011. Accessed on January, 17, 2012 at www.hhs.gov/ash/initiatives/hepatitis
Chronic HCV infection is a major public health problem that has surpassed HIV as a cause of death in the United States.1 Without treatment, HCV related mortality is expected to double. This program proposal will directly support the achievement of two of the Healthy People 2020 goals related to HCV - the goal of increasing the awareness of those infected and the goal of decreasing the number of new infections.