VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System Exceeds Treating Hepatitis C Veterans - VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System
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VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System Exceeds Treating Hepatitis C Veterans

May 23, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System Press Release header. Office of Public Affairs Media Relations (310) 268-3340 VHAGLAPublicAffairs@va.gov

VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System Exceeds Treating Hepatitis C Veterans

LOS ANGELES (MAY 23, 2018) – As of March 2018, the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System has treated 2,057 of its active hepatitis C (HCV) Veteran population with newly available, curative antiviral therapy.

VAGLAHS has one of the largest HCV infected Veteran populations within the VA. “The revolution in therapy has allowed us to treat 2,057 veterans identified as needing hepatitis C therapy,” said Debika Bhattacharya, MD and VAGLAHS attending physician. “We have made it our mission to reach out to veterans in our area and identify ALL of those at risk for this disease and treat 100% of them.”

With May being Hepatitis Awareness Month and the 19th dedicated as National Hepatitis Testing Day, VAGLAHS is proud of the progress it has made in curing HCV. Nationally, the VA has treated over 100,000 HCV infected veterans.

This month and for the year ahead, VAGLAHS will continue its effort with a special focus on reaching out to patients who have not yet been tested or have not yet come to VA for treatment. In addition to outreach, VAGLAHS has made it easier for patients at distant sites to receive HCV treatment through the use of telehealth and the establishment of an HCV treatment clinic at the VA Sepulveda Ambulatory Care Center. VAGLAHS has also reduced barriers to initiating and completing HCV treatment for patients who are homeless through its SCAN-ECHO collaboration with the Homeless PACT (HPACT) at GLA.

Veterans, especially those born between 1945-1965, are at an increased risk of HCV infection. Hepatitis C infections can go unnoticed for years, even decades. Left untreated, HCV can result in liver damage.

Don’t let hepatitis C surprise you. Get the facts. Know the risk. Get tested.

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