Eradicating Hepatitis C Requires Reaching All Populations With Diagnostics, Treatment, Partnering Across Sectors, Expert Says

STAT: Hepatitis is still a silent killer in Africa and elsewhere
Danjuma Adda, executive director of CFID Taraba and Chagro-Care Trust, national coordinator of the Civil Society Network for Viral Hepatitis in Nigeria, and 2020 New Voices fellow at the Aspen Institute

“The Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine was awarded this week to three researchers who discovered the virus that causes hepatitis C. According to the announcement, ‘For the first time in history, the disease can now be cured, raising hopes of eradicating hepatitis C virus from the world population.’ New blood tests and drugs for this deadly disease have already saved millions of lives. But for millions more around the world, the celebration is bittersweet and the revolution in diagnosis and treatment remains a distant dream. … [I]n most countries, including my own [in Nigeria], the vast majority of those who are sick are not getting diagnosed and treated until it is too late to save them. … Unlocking the mystery of hepatitis C was a towering achievement. But the next, essential step is to ensure that this discovery reaches its potential to alleviate the suffering and save the lives of millions of people in countries like mine. The global response to HIV and now Covid-19 has shown us what can be achieved when government, civil society, international organizations, and the private sector work together with a common goal. It’s time to make eradicating hepatitis such a goal” (10/9).

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