Report at a Glance
Report Brief for Providers
Hepatitis and Liver Cancer: Information for Health Care Providers
Hepatitis B and hepatitis C are major public health problems in the United States. Millions of people have these treatable infectious diseases, most do not know it, and about 15,000 people die each year from liver cancer or liver failure associated with these diseases. In the United States, chronic hepatitis B and C are more common, and claim more lives each year, than HIV/AIDS.
Chronic hepatitis B and C persist despite the current federal, state, and local efforts that are directed at their prevention and control. Therefore, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), along with several other government and private organizations, sought guidance from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) in identifying missed opportunities for addressing hepatitis B and C. The IOM report, Hepatitis and Liver Cancer: A National Strategy for Prevention and Control of Hepatitis B and C, offers recommendations on what health care providers, including primary care providers, can do as part of a national effort to address this epidemic.
Finding and Treating Patients with Chronic Hepatitis B and C
For primary care providers in the United States, there is a good chance that patients in their practices have unrecognized chronic hepatitis B and C. These infections can be treated, and in some cases, cured, but at-risk people first must be identified so that they can receive serological testing. Therefore, new strategies are needed to find chronically infected people and get them the best possible care.