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HEPATITIS C VIRUS INFECTION IN SAMOA AND AMERICAN SAMOA

GREGORY L. ARMSTRONGDivision of Viral Hepatitis, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; Department of Health, Government of American Samoa Pago Pago, American Samoa; Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital, Ministry of Health, Apia, Samoa; International Health Institute, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

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IAN T. WILLIAMSDivision of Viral Hepatitis, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; Department of Health, Government of American Samoa Pago Pago, American Samoa; Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital, Ministry of Health, Apia, Samoa; International Health Institute, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

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UTOOFILI ASOFA’AFETAI MAGADivision of Viral Hepatitis, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; Department of Health, Government of American Samoa Pago Pago, American Samoa; Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital, Ministry of Health, Apia, Samoa; International Health Institute, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

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SATUPAITEA VIALIDivision of Viral Hepatitis, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; Department of Health, Government of American Samoa Pago Pago, American Samoa; Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital, Ministry of Health, Apia, Samoa; International Health Institute, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

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WENDI L. KUHNERTDivision of Viral Hepatitis, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; Department of Health, Government of American Samoa Pago Pago, American Samoa; Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital, Ministry of Health, Apia, Samoa; International Health Institute, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

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STEPHEN T. McGARVEYDivision of Viral Hepatitis, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; Department of Health, Government of American Samoa Pago Pago, American Samoa; Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital, Ministry of Health, Apia, Samoa; International Health Institute, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

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Little is known about the prevalence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) in Pacific islands. In this study, serum specimens collected in 1985 and 2002 among the general populations of Samoa and American Samoa were tested for antibody to HCV by a third-generation enzyme immunoassay and a recombinant immunoblot assay. Of the 3,466 specimens tested, 8 (0.2%; 95% confidence interval = 0.07–0.4%) were positive for antibody to HCV. Prevalence did not vary by location or demographic characteristic. Thus, HCV is present in the Samoas but at a low prevalence.

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