Hep C treatment has changed flyer (For correctional centres)
Hep C treatment has changed
Easy to get
Hep C is a blood borne virus. This means blood from one person who has the hep C virus gets into another person’s blood.
This can happen by:
- Sharing injecting equipment, including fits and tourniquets
- Being injected by other people
- Getting a prison or backyard tattoo, or sharing the ink
- Sharing personal grooming items like toothbrushes, razors and hair clippers.
Having hep C in your blood causes inflammation of your liver which can cause damage or scarring. Over time this can cause cirrhosis or liver cancer.
Easy to test
Getting tested and treated inside is easy
- Put in a request form to medical
- You will need a fingerstick test or blood test
If available in your centre, this test uses a few drops of blood from a prick of your finger. The result will show if you have hep C now and need treatment.
A nurse will take blood from a vein to test for hep C. There are two parts to this test:
- Antibody test – Shows if you have ever had the hep C virus in your blood
- PCR test – If you have hep C now and need treatment.
Don’t have any symptoms?
You may not look or feel sick but you can still have hep C.
Easy to treat
Treatment is just tablets. No injections!
- Tablets for 8 to 12 weeks
- Take your tablets every day
- Doesn’t make you sick
- 95% chance of being cured
- Treatment is available in prison and in the community.
Started treatment but getting released?
Talk to the hep C nurse as soon as you know You will get your meds to take home.
Had all the blood tests done but getting released?
Ask your doctor to access your blood test results. This will save time and your veins.
Living with cirrhosis?
Treatment can sometimes be more complicated with cirrhosis – you may need to see a specialist and have other tests done. Even if you clear hep C you will still need to have regular liver check ups every 6 months.
After 12 weeks test for cure
You will need to have a blood test 12 weeks after you take your last tablet. This test will tell you if you have been cured of hep C.
Can I get hep c again?
- Yes, you can get hep C again, even after you have been cured by treatment. Using or getting a tattoo in prison can put you at risk.
- There isn’t a vaccination for hep C.
- Encourage your friends and family to get treated when you do.
You can’t get hepatitis C from?
Sharing food, drinks, plates, cups, knives, forks and spoons
- Spitting, coughing or sneezing
- Blood transfusions/medical procedures in Australia after 1990
- Sharing toilets, sinks and showers
- Hugging or kissing