In this training we will learn about how viral hepatitis A, B & C are transmitted and harm reduction strategies to prevent new infections. Participants will explore treatment options and how to support clients with viral hepatitis. An estimated 3.2 million people in the United States are living with chronic hepatitis C infection, and most don't feel ill or know they are infected, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
There are approximately 17,000 new hepatitis C cases each year in the U.S., many of which go unreported. The Department of Public Health reports that in 2012 there were 8.056 cases of hepatitis C that were reported in Massachusetts, which translated into 80 per 100,000 residents.
Substance use disorders and psychiatric morbidity are significantly more prevalent in chronic hepatitis C patients than in the general population (Journal of Clinical Psychiatry 2010) Untreated mental health is also associated with an increased risk for infection, behavioral health conditions however, are not absolute contraindications for chronic hepatitis treatment. As healthcare providers increasingly consider treating hepatitis in patients with mental disorders, they might turn to behavioral health providers to assess their patients for readiness for antiviral treatment. In addition, behavioral health treatment providers might have clients who have chronic hepatitis and who require support through hepatitis treatment process.
Upon completion of this program, participants will be able to:
- Describe the work of a healthy liver.
- Explain how viral hepatitis A, B & C is transmitted.
- Recite the potential signs and symptoms of viral hepatitis.
- Explain prevention strategies-vaccinations for viral hepatitis A & B.
- Describe harm reduction strategies for reducing transmission of viral hepatitis A, B & C.
- Explain the treatment and management of viral hepatitis A, B & C.
- Discuss the new treatment protocols for viral hepatitis C.
- Demonstrate how to assess a client's risks for acquiring a viral hepatitis infection.
- Generate key discussion points for teaching clients about viral hepatitis.
- Discuss the unique needs of client's with co-occurring mental health diagnosis and hepatitis.
MA Department of Public Health, Bureau of Substance Abuse Services, Praxis & AdCare Educational Institute, Inc.