Community health centers are ideally positioned to reach the people most affected by hepatitis C. However, community-based healthcare providers have limited access to information and training about hepatitis C testing, treatment, and care.
HepCCATT leverages the ECHO-Chicago telehealth program at the University of Chicago Medicine, to provide advanced training for primary care providers, preparing them to conduct hepatitis C risk assessments and to test, diagnose, counsel, stage, monitor, and treat persons with hepatitis C. New treatments for hepatitis C can contribute to preventing the spread of hepatitis C. These treatments can result in a sustained virologic response — essentially a cure — for most patients. When patients are cured, the virus drops to undetectable levels and can no longer spread to others.
Activities to improve testing, treatment and care for hepatitis C include:
- Developing a case-based curriculum to train primary care providers in underserved communities
- Offering a series of 10 video-conference training sessions on hepatitis C testing, treatment and care
Clinical trials have proven the ECHO model’s effectiveness in training community-based primary care providers.The HepCCATT coalition partners working together bring knowledge and experience to improving care for Chicago residents who are at risk for or infected with hepatitis C, particularly for those in underserved communities.