A National Epidemic of Hepatitis C Transmission
Hepatitis C Hits Young, Rural Drug Users Hard
By Anne Harding
Hepatitis C virus infections are skyrocketing among young people in rural areas where injection drug use is common. But resources for preventing the spread of the disease — from needle exchange programs to substance abuse treatment — are few and far between.
Among people younger than 30 in Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia, rates of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection nearly quadrupled from 2006 to 2012, according to a study published this May in the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Similar increases have been reported over the same time period in Massachusetts, Wisconsin, and upstate New York.
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