Hepatitis C Essay

1703 Words 7 Pages
Hepatitis C is a disease that causes inflammation of the liver caused by the hepatitis C virus. It is an infectious disease that’s virus can result in both acute and chronic hepatitis infection, and range in severity from mild illness lasting only a few weeks to a serious lifelong illness. (WHO http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs164/en/) The CDC FAQs for the Public database states that some infected people present mild to severe symptoms soon after being infected including fever, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, joint pain, jaundice, and many others. However, many people infected with Hepatitis C virus do not develop symptoms, in fact, approximately 70%-80% of people with acute Hepatitis C do not have any symptoms. …show more content…
(??) Although Hepatitis C can be found worldwide, the current events article I analyzed focused on the Hepatitis C epidemic in the United States only and was written by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The key concern of the CDC news article, published in May of 2016, is that hepatitis C is killing more Americans than any other infectious disease. According to surveillance data compiled by the CDC, the number of deaths as a result of hepatitis C reached an all-time high of 19,659 in 2014. (http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2016/p0504-hepc-mortality.html) A second study conducted by the CDC in 2013 showed that the annual hepatitis C mortality rate exceeded the total combined number of deaths from 60 other infectious diseases, including tuberculosis, HIV, and pneumococcal disease. (http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2016/p0504-hepc-mortality.html) The public health question across the US (and the rest of the world), is why are so many people dying of a preventable, curable …show more content…
Implementing continued screenings for diagnosis in baby boomers in future years could have prevented them from unknowingly transmitting the disease to other populations resulting in the progression of increased rates. I think that our government and healthcare agencies and facilities need to work to increase screening for diagnosis and treatment in a much more in depth approach. The most recent hepatitis C epidemic affecting younger individuals as a result of drug-related transmission could have been prevented by more rapidly implementing drug prevention programs on a more wide-scale basis. Over 60% of all new cases of hepatitis C infection result from injection drug use by sharing needles. http://luxury.rehabs.com/drug-abuse/hepatitis-c/) According to the CDC, the one-time use of sterile syringes remains the most effective way to limit hepatitis C transmission associated with injection drug use, yet federal law bans the use of federal funds for needle exchange programs. (https://www.aclu.org/fact-sheet/needle-exchange-programs-promote-public-safety). As a result, less than 200 exchange programs exist across the entire US. (http://knowledgecenter.csg.org/kc/content/needle-exchange-programs). I believe that laws banning federal funding for needle exchange programs need

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