Fighting rising HCV infection rates by testing
for the virus and ensuring
those who need it
can access appropriate care.
Not enough people with the virus even know that they have contracted HCV. Expanding screenings and connecting patients with appropriate care is integral to the work.
HepConnect’s screening and linkage to care focus builds upon FOCUS Partners’ efforts to make screening and linkage to care routine in regions heavily impacted by the opioid crisis and spikes of viral disease acquired through injection drug use. This initiative focuses exclusively on Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia.
- Other-Substance Use
- Community Health Center
- Other-Health Department
- Community Based Partnership
This is done in accordance with screening guidelines promulgated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), and state and local public health departments.
To accomplish this, FOCUS Partners create systems change by leveraging technology and implementing quality improvement processes. FOCUS Partners include health departments, health systems, clinics, harm reduction organizations, and other community and public health organizations.
FOCUS funding supports HIV, HCV and HBV screening and linkage to a first medical appointment.
Dr. Kelly Cooper works at a weekly outdoor clinic run by Positively Living, Choice Health Network.
To address growing HCV infection rates, people must first know they have contracted the virus. HepConnect will broaden awareness of the HCV crisis among communities that are most impacted by the opioid epidemic in order to help connect people with appropriate care.
Linkage to care
Accessing healthcare can be difficult in rural areas, including much of greater Appalachia. Lack of insurance coverage, limited transportation options and few nearby healthcare providers are obstacles many residents of the region must overcome to access appropriate care. HepConnect will support local community partnerships in an effort to address and remove obstacles to appropriate care.