Getting people tested for hepatitis C is important.
The problem with hepatitis C infections in the U.S. has several fronts: new patients from injection drug users caught up in the opioid crisis, a large population in prison that may not be getting tested and treated and a large number of Baby Boomers, many of whom don’t know they are infected, said a senior scientist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Early intervention and timely testing and treatment could be key to addressing the problem, Dr. William Thompson said.
He spoke Thursday to the new Department of Population Health Sciences at Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University. The largest current group of people in the U.S with hepatitis C, which is estimated to be nearly 4 million , are Baby Boomers, where 3 percent have had it at some point whether they know it or not, Thompson said. Prior to 1992, when screening for it in blood products became widespread, many were unknowingly infected through transfusions.
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