EXTRA, EXTRA/Expanding hepatitis C treatment
Nearly 4 million Americans are infected with hepatitis C, according to the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and approximately 70 percent will develop chronic liver disease. Currently 10,000 people die from hepatitis C annually, and the CDC projects that number to double or triple in the next few years. To treat the infected before they develop potentially life-threatening symptoms, the Bethesda, Md.-based National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) launched a pilot program in July to train local health center staff on treatment strategies. Health centers in Miami, Houston, New York, Baltimore, Los Angeles and Denver/Fort Lupton, Colo., are participating in the program with NACHC and the Denver-based Liver Research Institute. By offering on-site treatment, NACHC expects that more patients will receive care and better adhere to the rigorous treatment schedule. For more information, visit www.nachc.com.