Welcome!

News Feed Item

Baby Boomers Should Get Tested for Hepatitis C

ALEXANDRIA, Va., June 24, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) applauds the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) decision of June 24, 2013 giving a "B" rating for testing baby boomers for hepatitis C virus. This seemingly small change -- from a "C" to a "B" -- in the USPSTF rating signals an incredible change in the lives of patients who have HCV and are unaware of it. A "B" rating allows for payment by Medicare and private insurers for testing with no copayment by patients.

More than 75 percent of the estimated 3 million US citizens with HCV are baby boomers. This new USPSTF "B" rating for HCV testing of baby boomers matches its rating for HCV testing among injection drug users and others at high risk.  

Earlier this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended an age-based screening strategy that required a one-time test for everyone born between 1945 and 1965. The USPSTF had initially recommended a "C" rating for this birth cohort in a draft proposal, conflicting with the CDC recommendation and creating confusion in the primary care community. The change from a "C" to a "B" rating gives primary care clinicians the absolute clarity of the hepatology community -- early detection of HCV allows for the drastically greater possibility of treatment success for patients.

HCV is usually an asymptomatic disease, and three out of four of those afflicted are unaware of their infection until their liver disease is far advanced. To allow the disease to progress to the point where a patient is showing symptoms greatly increases the danger of the disease, decreases our abilities to treat these patients, and often results in the development of liver cancer, frequently requiring liver transplantation -- at best. Liver cancer is one of the few cancers increasing in frequency and has one of the highest mortality rates. The ability of a patient to be tested and treated for HCV at the earliest possible date allows him or her to avoid the disease's progression to liver cancer.

Liver transplantation is an expensive procedure and testing for HCV with subsequent treatment is expected to decrease the number of patients who would otherwise require transplantation and provides a significant financial savings to the nation's healthcare system. It is worthy of note that these recommendations come at a time when the treatments for hepatitis C are becoming both more effective and easier to tolerate.  The other savings is even greater -- decreasing the number of patients requiring and waiting for a liver transplantation equals saving lives. The number of livers available does not match the number of patients who currently require a transplantation, which means that patients die while on the waiting list. In 2012, there were 6,256 liver transplantations performed. As of June 7, 2013, there are 16,484 patients waiting for a suitable organ.

The CDC recommended one-time age-based screening allowing for early detection of HCV reduces the chance of progression to liver cancer, and decreases the number of patients requiring a liver transplantation. The new "B" rating by the USPSTF means that a large number of patients can be tested and successfully treated with new direct-acting antiviral drugs that have allowed the medical community to cure HCV. Ten years ago, we were not able to cure patients of HCV, but research in liver disease has led to these new drugs. Treatment is still difficult and expensive, but it is constantly improving, and we anticipate the FDA to approve numerous new drugs over the next three to five years. New drugs currently in the pipeline will allow us to increase the cure rate and decrease treatment side effects. 

AASLD is a subspecialty society representing clinicians and researchers in liver disease. The work of our members has laid the foundation for the development of drugs used to treat patients with HCV. Our members are on the frontline of treating and curing these patients. This decision by the USPSTF helps us help patients.

AASLD is the leading organization of scientists and healthcare professionals committed to preventing and curing liver disease. AASLD was founded in 1950 by a small group of leading liver specialists and has grown to an international society responsible for all aspects of hepatology.

Press releases and additional information about AASLD are available online at www.aasld.org.

Media Contact: Gregory Bologna
703/299-9766
[email protected] 

This release was issued through The Xpress Press News Service, merging e-mail and satellite distribution technologies to reach business analysts and media outlets worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.XpressPress.com.

SOURCE American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD)

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Amazon started as an online bookseller 20 years ago. Since then, it has evolved into a technology juggernaut that has disrupted multiple markets and industries and touches many aspects of our lives. It is a relentless technology and business model innovator driving disruption throughout numerous ecosystems. Amazon’s AWS revenues alone are approaching $16B a year making it one of the largest IT companies in the world. With dominant offerings in Cloud, IoT, eCommerce, Big Data, AI, Digital Assista...
While DevOps most critically and famously fosters collaboration, communication, and integration through cultural change, culture is more of an output than an input. In order to actively drive cultural evolution, organizations must make substantial organizational and process changes, and adopt new technologies, to encourage a DevOps culture. Moderated by Andi Mann, panelists discussed how to balance these three pillars of DevOps, where to focus attention (and resources), where organizations might...
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Lachapelle, CEO of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), provided an overview of various initiatives to certify the security of connected devices and future trends in ensuring public trust of IoT. Eric Lachapelle is the Chief Executive Officer of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), an international certification body. His role is to help companies and individuals to achieve professional, accredited and worldwide re...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the de...
Both SaaS vendors and SaaS buyers are going “all-in” to hyperscale IaaS platforms such as AWS, which is disrupting the SaaS value proposition. Why should the enterprise SaaS consumer pay for the SaaS service if their data is resident in adjacent AWS S3 buckets? If both SaaS sellers and buyers are using the same cloud tools, automation and pay-per-transaction model offered by IaaS platforms, then why not host the “shrink-wrapped” software in the customers’ cloud? Further, serverless computing, cl...
You know you need the cloud, but you’re hesitant to simply dump everything at Amazon since you know that not all workloads are suitable for cloud. You know that you want the kind of ease of use and scalability that you get with public cloud, but your applications are architected in a way that makes the public cloud a non-starter. You’re looking at private cloud solutions based on hyperconverged infrastructure, but you’re concerned with the limits inherent in those technologies.
The taxi industry never saw Uber coming. Startups are a threat to incumbents like never before, and a major enabler for startups is that they are instantly “cloud ready.” If innovation moves at the pace of IT, then your company is in trouble. Why? Because your data center will not keep up with frenetic pace AWS, Microsoft and Google are rolling out new capabilities. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Don Browning, VP of Cloud Architecture at Turner, posited that disruption is inevitable for comp...
"When we talk about cloud without compromise what we're talking about is that when people think about 'I need the flexibility of the cloud' - it's the ability to create applications and run them in a cloud environment that's far more flexible,” explained Matthew Finnie, CTO of Interoute, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
No hype cycles or predictions of zillions of things here. IoT is big. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, Associate Partner at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data analytics considerations, edge-to-cloud tec...
IoT solutions exploit operational data generated by Internet-connected smart “things” for the purpose of gaining operational insight and producing “better outcomes” (for example, create new business models, eliminate unscheduled maintenance, etc.). The explosive proliferation of IoT solutions will result in an exponential growth in the volume of IoT data, precipitating significant Information Governance issues: who owns the IoT data, what are the rights/duties of IoT solutions adopters towards t...
With the introduction of IoT and Smart Living in every aspect of our lives, one question has become relevant: What are the security implications? To answer this, first we have to look and explore the security models of the technologies that IoT is founded upon. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nevi Kaja, a Research Engineer at Ford Motor Company, discussed some of the security challenges of the IoT infrastructure and related how these aspects impact Smart Living. The material was delivered interac...
Wooed by the promise of faster innovation, lower TCO, and greater agility, businesses of every shape and size have embraced the cloud at every layer of the IT stack – from apps to file sharing to infrastructure. The typical organization currently uses more than a dozen sanctioned cloud apps and will shift more than half of all workloads to the cloud by 2018. Such cloud investments have delivered measurable benefits. But they’ve also resulted in some unintended side-effects: complexity and risk. ...
It is ironic, but perhaps not unexpected, that many organizations who want the benefits of using an Agile approach to deliver software use a waterfall approach to adopting Agile practices: they form plans, they set milestones, and they measure progress by how many teams they have engaged. Old habits die hard, but like most waterfall software projects, most waterfall-style Agile adoption efforts fail to produce the results desired. The problem is that to get the results they want, they have to ch...
In 2014, Amazon announced a new form of compute called Lambda. We didn't know it at the time, but this represented a fundamental shift in what we expect from cloud computing. Now, all of the major cloud computing vendors want to take part in this disruptive technology. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Doug Vanderweide, an instructor at Linux Academy, discussed why major players like AWS, Microsoft Azure, IBM Bluemix, and Google Cloud Platform are all trying to sidestep VMs and containers wit...
The Internet giants are fully embracing AI. All the services they offer to their customers are aimed at drawing a map of the world with the data they get. The AIs from these companies are used to build disruptive approaches that cannot be used by established enterprises, which are threatened by these disruptions. However, most leaders underestimate the effect this will have on their businesses. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rene Buest, Director Market Research & Technology Evangelism at Ara...