Model Addressing Hepatitis C- An Epidemic That Impacts PWID

Author: Marks R, Carden-Glenn D

Theme: Models of Care Year: 2018

HCMSG was founded in 2011 to address the lack of awareness, education and
supportive services for people affected by Hepatitis C (HCV), Co-infected with HIV.
Description of model of care/intervention:
HCMSG, a community based organization (CBO), has been successful in reaching
and impacting patients and providers nationwide through our flagship program
model. We conduct a diverse array of programming geared towards enhancing the
degree to which patients, community based service providers and healthcare
providers can manage and treat. Our work mainly involves people who use drugs
and framing educational groups around programs such as syringe exchanges in
response to the connection between HCV and injection drug use.
We’ve trained 1,000+ facilitators who in turn have created these model groups in
their own communities. In the last 2 years these trainings have been performed in
over 25 states in the U.S. reaching both urban and rural settings.
We give the provider the understanding of how and why patients who don’t abstain
from drug use, can and should be treated with respect for HCV without leaving
patients feeling disconnected, misunderstood and stigmatized. This comes from the
experiences of a patient cured of HCV and a mother who lost her son from overdose.
The Circle addresses the needs of all people affected by HCV and co-infected with
HIV. The idea of a circle gives people a sense of belonging without judgement. It
has been shown to effectively reduce the harm by addressing individuals’ nonmedical issues where they are provided with hygiene safety kits, education and
supportive services. We encourage them to be tested and provide linkage to care.
Conclusion and next steps:
CBOs are able to make an impact with patients and providers. These programs
provide the knowledge and tools to enable participants to continue this work in their
own communities.
Disclosure of Interest Statement:
HCMSG has received funding from Merck and Company, Gilead Pharmaceuticals,
and AbbVie in support of these programs.

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