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Get the facts

Most Hepatitis C can now be cured with a 12-week course of tablets. If you think you're at risk, ask for a test.

What is Hepatitis C?

Hepatitis (or 'Hep') C is a blood-borne infection that damages the liver and causes liver cancer.

Because Hep C often doesn't have any symptoms, many people with Hep C don't know they have it.

Most people with Hep C have not been treated.

Most Hep C can now be cured with a 12-week course of tablets which have very few side effects. They have a greater than 95 per cent cure rate.

The World Health Organisation has set a target for viral hepatitis to be eliminated by 2030. That's why it's even more important to spread the word about Hep C and make sure that everyone that is at risk of infection gets a blood test.

Should I get tested for Hep C?

People who are at risk and should be tested include:

  • people who have ever injected drugs;
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities;
  • people born overseas in high prevalence and high disease burden countries and regions including Egypt, Pakistan, China, Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America;
  • people who have received unsafe tattooing and/or body piercing;
  • gay and bisexual men who have HIV;
  • people with bleeding disorders;
  • children born to women with hepatitis C;
  • other people with hepatitis C who may not be engaged in clinical care such as war veterans and people who use performance and image enhancing drugs; 
  • people with significant psychiatric illness.

The Austin Health Rapid Access Hepatitis C Treatment Service

Austin Health is leading the way in treating people in our community with Hepatitis C. We have now cured over 1000 people since the exciting new Hep C medications became available.

If the patient is covered by Medicare, all Hepatitis C medication and treatment through Austin Health is free of charge.

Our new Rapid Access to Hepatitis C Treatment Service aims to improve access to treatment, particularly for those who are socially disadvantaged or those from ethnic minorities.

We have a well-established outreach clinic running at Banyule Community Health Centre and we have just opened a new outreach clinic in Wallan to further enable community-based treatment. Together with the existing services available at Austin Hospital, we are working towards the government target to eliminate Hep C by 2030.

 

Rapid access means:

  • Same day response if you contact us in business hours
  • If treatment is required we will commence it within 30 days
  • We will keep face-to-face appointments to a minimum, but support services are available if required.
  • We will monitor progress by phone.
  • Patients can self-refer 
  • We will post medications to the patient.

How to refer to the Hep C Outreach Clinic

Contact our liver nurses to refer to the Hep C Treatment Service:

Phone or text: 0481 909 741
Fax: (03) 9496 2732
Email: livernurses@austin.org.au 

Any health professional can refer to the rapid access Hepatitis C treatment service - you do not have to be a GP.

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Austin Health acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging.
We celebrate, value and include people of all backgrounds, genders, sexualities, cultures, bodies and abilities.