Federal Funding Needed for Hep C Education and Rapid Testing
Rapid testing a breakthrough in fight against hepatitis C
June 12, 2012
By Julia Landau California Health Report
The sun was setting on Durant Avenue in Berkeley while six people sat in a waiting room. Offered a bittersweet opportunity–a free test for exposure to the hepatitis C virus–people trickled in throughout the day, most of them between the ages of 45 and 67.
Responding to mounting evidence of hepatitis C’s reach, the Centers for Disease Control recommended that all baby boomers be screened–regardless of reported risk factors like injection drug use. May 19 was the first National Viral Hepatitis Testing Day.
The Berkeley Free Clinic usually serves uninsured and indigent people. But when the CDC channeled its message through front pages of newspapers across the country, it changed the hepatitis C demographic–and the clinic’s patient base–for the day.
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