World Hepatitis Day
World Hepatitis Day (July 28) brings us together to raise awareness of hepatitis and influence real change. But what is hepatitis? According to the CDC website, Viral hepatitis — a group of infectious diseases known as hepatitis A, B, C, D, and E — affects millions of people worldwide, causing both acute (short-term) and chronic (long-term) liver disease.” Over the years, Howard Brown Health has been working with our patients and community to prevent the spread of hepatitis, provide access to treatment, and help get people cured — yes, some types of hepatitis are curable!
In particular, our Social Services department provides support for people living with Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). Since the HCV program’s start in 2017, the team has helped 225 patients go through the rigorous treatment process, which can last up to 12 weeks. The team has grown in the past year and now includes a dedicated case manager, nurse, and pharmacist.
While the HCV program has made adjustments and is working remotely due to COVID-19, the goal remains the same: connect with our community and help people access the HCV cure. We have adapted our process to include off-site labs and telehealth, as well as treating patients who come to us through the walk-in clinics and from provider referrals.
The team is planning further outreach at methadone clinics and is working with local organizations that serve people living with HIV and drug use to provide a path towards HCV treatment. The HCV program is also working on its “Harm Reduction Manual” that will inform our work with patients and their relationship with substances. Thanks to the HCV team for all of their hard work!
To learn more, please contact the Hepatitis C Virus team:
Tom Ambelang 773.388.8996
or Sam Forsythe at 773.388.1600 ext. 1927