Fueled By The Opioid Crisis, Hepatitis C Cases Skyrocketing
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says access to clean syringes and a limit on Medicaid barriers to curative treatments for hepatitis C can reduce rates of death from the disease and transmission of the virus to others.
U.S. Hepatitis C Cases Soar On Spike In Heroin Use
U.S. health officials said new cases of hepatitis C rose nearly 300 percent from 2010 to 2015, despite the availability of cures for the liver disease, fueled by a spike in the use of heroin and other injection drugs, according to a report released on Thursday. (Berkrot, 5/11)
Hepatitis C Infections Tripled In Five Years
The trend isn't only destroying families, it's devastating state health care budgets. Sky high hepatitis C drug costs have led states to restrict coverage of drugs to treat it. Free needle exchanges, which minimize the sharing of needles that transmit the disease, also face challenges with funding and opposition among those who believe it encourages drug use. (O'Donnell and DeMio, 5/11)
New Hepatitis C Infections Soar To 15-Year High, CDC Says
The number of Americans newly diagnosed with hepatitis C hit a 15-year high in 2015, as the viral disease spread unrelentingly among young adult drug users and detection efforts gained more traction. Infections are growing fastest among Americans in their 20s, because of injection drug use, according to research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The abuse of heroin and prescription opioids has boomed in the U.S. in recent years, creating a new generation of addicts at risk from needle-sharing. There were 34,000 new infections in 2015, the agency estimated. (Cortez and Bloomfield, 5/11)