Free Hepatitis C treatment prog. to be launched this week

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Health Minister Dr Frank Anthony on Tuesday said a free Hepatitis C treatment programme will be launched this week.

The Minister was giving his daily COVID-19 update when he made the announcement of the collaborative effort with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

Hepatitis C, according to the United States (US) Mayo Clinic’s website, is an infection that causes liver inflammation, sometimes leading to serious liver damage. It spreads through contaminated blood.

“For the first time, from the Ministry, we have partnered with PAHO to access these medications and will be launching that programme on Thursday.

“For the first time in Guyana, the government is going to provide the treatment,” Dr Anthony said.

The Minister said infections in the country have been detected through blood transfusion services. But for many years Guyanese could not afford the treatment.

“…treatment was very costly and people couldn’t afford the treatment. So on average at one point in time, to treat a patient with Hep C it was about US $80,000. That came down to about US$20,000 and now it’s at about US$2,000,” the Health Minister pointed out.

 

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