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WHO has released a report on progress in access to hepatitis C treatment in 2018

WHO released the latest “Progress report on access to hepatitis C treatment” on 8th March 2018 . This report tracks the progress in access to hepatitis C treatment since 2016. It was jointly developed by the WHO Department of HIV and Global Hepatitis Programme and the WHO Department of Essential Medicines and Health Products.

The report reviews the progress made in expanding access to life-saving treatment for hepatitis C infection in 23 low- and middle-income countries. It also provides information from innovator and generic manufacturers and multiple partner organizations working in the field of viral hepatitis.

The key findings of the report are as follows.

– Access to hepatitis C treatment is increasing, quite rapidly in some countries – but this access is focused primarily in a few high-burden countries.
– The annual number of people who initiated direct-acting antiviral (DAA) treatment increased from around 1 million in 2015 to 1.5 million in 2016.
– To fast-track progress, we need more country leadership and more countries committing to the elimination of hepatitis C. A great number of countries need to seize the opportunity to procure the more affordable generic DAAs, which have become available through voluntary licensing or local production.
– We need to join forces to unblock the price barriers in upper-middle- and high-income countries, which are home to 38% of all people with chronic hepatitis C infection.
– We need to rapidly scale up access to hepatitis testing, as most people with hepatitis C remain unaware of their infection, let alone the need and chance to be cured.

Please share this report widely within your networks and on social media. Please also share the stories of patients living in China, Georgia, Mongolia and Pakistan, who tell us “what cure means” for them.

The new report, key messages and associated materials are available on our websites:
www.who.int/hepatitis/en/
and http://www.who.int/medicines/en/

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