Researchers Urge for Removal of HCV Treatment Restrictions for Drug Users

In light of new evidence supporting the efficacy of hepatitis C virus (HCV) treatments in individuals who use or inject drugs, researchers are urging the removal of restrictions that prevent recent drug users from accessing lifesaving HCV therapies.

In light of new evidence supporting the efficacy of hepatitis C virus (HCV) treatments in individuals who use or inject drugs, researchers are urging the removal of restrictions that prevent recent drug users from accessing lifesaving HCV therapies.

Although HCV treatments can be highly effective in curing the disease, these new therapies remain inaccessible to individuals who inject drugs in many countries due to restrictions on treatment reimbursement. Concerns about poor response to therapy and decreased adherence also prevent many clinicians from prescribing treatment to this population.

The systematic review, published in The Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatology, assessed direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy for HCV infection among participants who use drugs. The researchers examined treatment completion, sustained virologic response (SVR), and loss to follow-up among those with recent drug use and those receiving opioid substitution therapy.

Data from 38 eligible studies including 3634 participants were included.

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