Ten-Fold Increase in HCV Treatment Uptake among People who Inject Drugs Following Broad Access to DAA Therapies in Australia

Author: Iversen J , Grebely J , Catlett B , Cunningham P , Dore GD and Maher L.

Theme: Epidemiology & Public Health Research Year: 2017

Background: Prior to DAA therapy, ~1-2% of people who inject drugs (PWID) were treated for HCV annually in Australia. This study examined HCV treatment uptake and associated factors among PWID in October 2016, seven months after DAA therapies were listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. Methods: The Australian Needle Syringe Program Survey is cross-sectional sero-surveillance project conducted annually. Participation involves self-completion of a behavioural questionnaire and provision of a dried blood spot for HIV/HCV serological testing. Recent (last 12months) treatment uptake was estimated among HCV antibody positive respondents after adjusting for cleared infection (-25% for spontaneous clearance and -55% for prior treatment-induced clearance). Multivariable logistic regression examined factors associated with recent treatment uptake. Results: Among n=1,019 antibody positive respondents and after adjusting for cleared infection, 20% (n=143) of respondents reported recent treatment uptake in 2016. Respondents who reported spontaneous clearance (n=104) or prior treatment induced clearance (n=31) were excluded. Factors independently associated with recent treatment among remaining respondents included: older age (36-45yrs AOR 1.84, 95% CI 1.02-3.31, p=0.042; >45yrs AOR 3.37, 95% CI 1.90-5.95); current opioid substitution therapy (AOR 1.92, 95% CI 1.31-2.81) and Download abstract Download presentation Watch video