High Prevalence Of Current And Past Hepatitis C Virus Infections Among New Injectors Found In A Cross-Sectional Study In Germany, 2011-2014: Missed Opportunities For Counselling And Testing

Author: Enkelmann J, Gassowski M, Nielsen S, Wenz B, Marcus U, Bremer V, Zimmermann R

Theme: Epidemiology & Public Health Research Year: 2018

Background: In Germany, risk of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is highest among people who inject drugs (PWID). New injectors (NI) are particularly vulnerable for HCVacquisition. We describe characteristics of NI and missed opportunities for HCV counselling and testing (C&T). Methods: We performed a cross-sectional study among PWID in eight German cities 2011- 2014 using respondent-driven-sampling. Data on sociodemographic characteristics, previous HCV testing and access to care were collected through questionnairebased interviews. Capillary blood was tested for HCV; participants with detectable HCV antibody and/or HCV-RNA were considered HCV positive. We described characteristics of NI (injecting

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