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The impact of direct-acting anti-virals on the hepatitis C care cascade: identifying progress and gaps towards hepatitis C elimination in the United States.
Chhatwal J, Chen Q, Bethea ED, Hur C, Spaulding AC, Kanwal F. The impact of direct-acting anti-virals on the hepatitis C care cascade: identifying progress and gaps towards hepatitis C elimination in the United States. Alimentary pharmacology & therapeutics. 2019 Jul 1; 50(1):66-74.
The hepatitis C virus (HCV) care cascade has changed dramatically following the introduction of direct-acting anti-virals (DAAs). Up-to-date estimates of the cascade are needed to monitor progress, identify key gaps and inform policy.
To estimate the current and future HCV care cascade in the United States, nationally and in select subpopulations of interest.
We used a previously validated mathematical model to simulate the landscape of HCV in the United States from 2011 onwards, accounting for HCV screening policy updates, newer HCV treatments and rising HCV incidence.
By the end of 2018, of 4.29 million HCV persons alive, 2.71 million (63%) were actively viremic, 2.24 million (52%) aware and 1.58 million (37%) cured. By 2030, under the status quo, of 3.65 million HCV persons alive, 1.88 million (51%) would be viremic, 2.25 million (62%) aware and 1.77 million (49%) cured. The HCV care cascade in 2018 differed substantially by subpopulation: of 1.34 million incarcerated HCV persons, 96% were viremic, 36% aware and 4% cured; of 0.87 million HCV persons in Medicare, 31% were viremic, 72% aware and 69% cured; and of 0.37 million HCV persons in Medicaid, 49% were viremic, 54% aware and 51% cured. Implementing universal screening, providing unrestricted treatment and controlling HCV incidence were factors found to have the largest effect on improving the HCV care cascade.
Since the launch of DAAs, the HCV care cascade has shifted towards higher awareness and treatment rates; however, additional interventions are needed to move towards HCV elimination.