1921
Volume 101, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645

Abstract

Abstract.

Ethiopia’s hepatitis C virus (HCV) prevalence is predicted to rise by 2030. To halt this increasing trend, a suitable approach to the elimination of HCV is needed. This review explores the current status, challenges, and opportunities and outlines a strategy for the micro-elimination approach in Ethiopia. I searched PubMed and EMBASE using combined Medical Subject Heading databases for the literature on HCV micro-elimination. A phased public health approach to HCV micro-elimination, including preparation/capacity building (phase I), implementation (phase II), and rollout and scale-up (phase III), targeting people living with HIV, prisoners, chronic hepatitis and cancer patients, blood donors, and pregnant women is a pragmatic strategy to Ethiopia. This can be implemented at general and tertiary care referral hospitals with a future scale-up to district hospitals through task-shifting by training general practitioners, nurses, laboratory technologists, and pharmacists. Availability of the highly effective direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) can be ensured by expanding the existing program that provides highly subsidized DAAs through an agreement with Gilead Sciences, Inc. and eventually aiming at domestic generic manufacturing. The significant enablers to HCV micro-elimination in Ethiopia include the control of healthcare–associated HCV infection, blood safety, access to affordable testing and pan-genotypic DAAs, task-shifting, multisectoral partnership, and regulatory support. General population-based HCV screening and treatment are not cost-effective for Ethiopia because of high cost, program complexity, and disease epidemiology.

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  • Received : 18 Apr 2019
  • Accepted : 20 Aug 2019
  • Published online : 16 Sep 2019
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