Public health-primary care testing has high uptake, doesn't identify hidden hepatitis C
A strategy to test the general population for hepatitis B and C viruses in areas of high prevalence had high test uptake but did not detect hidden chronic hepatitis C infections.
The study, a public health-primary care collaboration, sought to test individuals between 40 and 70 years of age (n=6,743) in two Dutch hepatitis hotspots.
All family physicians in the hotspots invited their patients to be tested, with implementation and follow-up by the regional public health service.
Test uptake was higher than expected at 51 percent (n=3,434), however no active/chronic hepatitis C infections were detected.
This strategy, the authors surmise, could be effective in countries with higher rates of hepatitis or other infectious diseases, but is not recommended for low prevalence countries.