|Treatment Options||Interferon-based treatment (detail)||Direct acting antiviral treatment (detail)|
New treatments for hep C, called DAAs (direct acting antivirals) have been available since 1 March 2016. All people living in Australia who have a Healthcare Card can access DAA treatment. There are no restrictions based on injecting drugs or a person’s level of liver damage.
They are different to previous treatment in several ways:
- cure around 95%, or more, of people who take them (even if someone has cirrhosis)
- have minimal side-effects
- last for just 12 weeks (in most cases)
- just a few pills each day (no injections).
Treatment improves people’s liver health. Clearing hep C reduces liver inflammation and can help reverse fibrosis and even cirrhosis.
Knowing that they are no longer living with hep C may also help people feel better about themselves…no longer worried about any potential to pass on the virus to someone else.
Most commonly, people simply visit a GP and are assessed for treatment. This involves full blood testing and assessment of liver damage (Fibroscan or APRI).
Those people who have advanced liver damage, such as cirrhosis, will be referred for treatment by a specialist (people who have cirrhosis also need long term monitoring for liver cancer even if their hep C is cured).
People who are treated by their GP take their prescription to a community pharmacy (chemist shop). Pharmacies will usually ask for the prescription first and then they will order in the medicine.
For more news, subscribe to The Champion e-newsletter, and call the Hepatitis Infoline (1800 803 990).
Choose an infographic download from the bottom of the page, depending on if you print in colour or black & white.
This page was last updated 12 April 2017
Content drawn from Australian Recommendations for the Management of Hepatitis C Virus Infection: a Consensus Statement 2017, and publications of ASHM, The Kirby Institute and The Centre for Social Research in Health, and vetted by our Medical and Research Advisory Panel.