Massachusetts is witnessing a rise in hepatitis C infections. Testing and treatment, especially in primary care settings, are inadequate to prevent the rise of this health issue. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) is urging healthcare providers to increase their efforts in hepatitis C testing and treatment, emphasizing that over 95% of cases can be cured with simple treatments.
Data shows that only 14% of Massachusetts residents have been tested for hepatitis C, and just 4 in 10 diagnosed individuals received treatment within a year. Many clinical laboratories in the state do not conduct essential RNA reflex testing for hepatitis C. The DPH encourages laboratory directors to make reflex testing a standard practice.
The attached materials include key findings from these analyses and a DPH fact sheet on hepatitis C testing and treatment. More information is available at Mass.gov/HepC, and the DPH appreciates the dedication of healthcare professionals to public health in Massachusetts.