Current Hepatitis Reports

, Volume 12, Issue 4, pp 220–226 | Cite as

The Role of Public Health in an Era of All-Oral Therapy for Hepatitis C Infection

  • John W. WardEmail author
Hepatitis C: Therapeutics (MP Manns and T von Hahn, Section editors)


The anticipation of all-oral therapy for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection creates new opportunities for preventing HCV-related morbidity and mortality. This curative therapy is associated with fewer side effects and contraindications, which likely will greatly expand the number of persons eligible to receive treatment. To ensure that benefits from all-oral treatment regimens are realized for individuals and communities, public health can deliver essential services to meet its three fundamental roles: assessment, policy development, and assurance. Public health monitors HCV transmission and disease to prioritize populations needing care, and collaborates community-wide to create policies, plans, and programs to improve access to HCV testing and linkages to care. Public health also evaluates the effectiveness, accessibility, and quality of HCV care and treatment. Public health research can reveal how curative treatments can improve prevention and eliminate disparities. The extent to which public health can identify and link HCV-infected persons to quality care and appropriate therapy will be a key determining factor in whether the full benefits of curative HCV therapy are realized.


Hepatitis viral hepatitis hepatitis C public health United States anti-viral therapy health disparities 


Compliance with Ethics Guidelines

Conflict of Interest

Dr. John W. Ward declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by the author.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York (outside the USA) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Viral HepatitisNational Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention CDCAtlantaUSA

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