Today is World Hepatitis Day. In 2021 we join the global community in the message of Hep can’t wait!, reminding us that we need to be proactive and act on viral hepatitis.
For our community of people with bleeding disorders and families and friends, there are several important messages and ways that we can take action.
We are grateful to the community members who have shared their personal stories to underline the seriousness of these messages.
Hepatitis C has had a profound effect on our community. In Australia many people with bleeding disorders acquired hepatitis C from their plasma-derived clotting factor treatment products or other blood products before 1993. Several safety measures were introduced by 1993 and the risk of bloodborne viruses from plasma-derived clotting factor products in Australia is now considered to be extremely low. But many people in our community live on with the consequences of those early infections.
Revolutionary new hep C treatments are now available in Australia, that are easy to take with very high cure rates. Many Australians with bleeding disorders and hepatitis C have now had treatment and been cured – but some might not even know they have hep C.
ARE YOU AT RISK?
For some women and people with mild bleeding disorders, it has been a surprise to find out they have hepatitis C. But if you ever had a blood product before 1993, including whole blood and plasma-derived clotting factor concentrates, you could be at risk of hepatitis C.
If this is you and you have never had testing for hep C, now is the time to be tested – and have treatment to be cured, if you do have hep C!
Women can have hep C too!
Mary Jane describes her hep C journey, from diagnosis to treatment and cure.
HAVE YOU BEEN CURED?
Has your liver recovered from hep C?
If you don’t know the answer to that question, don’t wait to find out. Take the time to contact your hepatitis specialist and check your liver test results.
It’s very important to check that you don't need ongoing follow-up with a liver specialist. For example, if you have cirrhosis or extensive scarring and have successful treatment, you will still need ongoing care of your liver.
Finally cured of hep C!
Gavin Finkelstein, HFA President, shares his personal story about living with hepatitis C, treatment, cure and following up his liver test results.
IN SUMMARY – DON’T PUT IT OFF!
- Find out your hep C status if you don't know
- Hep C can be cured. Treatment is simple
- If you have been cured, ask your doctor if you need ongoing liver health monitoring.
What else can you do?
Consider starting a conversation if you think this is someone you know among your family and friends.
And share this information with others!
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