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Friday, June 8, 2018

News Recap:

Canada:
New guidelines recommend hepatitis C screening be done for those born between 1945 and 1975. The Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver (CASL), a national group of health-care providers and researchers, published its guidelines on testing and treating hepatitis C in Monday’s edition of the CMAJ. Canadians born between 1945 and 1975 – essentially the baby-boom generation – should be tested for the potentially liver-destroying virus hepatitis C. Similar recommendations were made last year but nixed by Health Canada.

In Other News:
How Do You Die from Hepatitis A? A woman in Australia died after eating frozen pomegranate seeds that were linked to an outbreak of hepatitis A, health officials announced this week. This death is the first in the hepatitis A outbreak tied to pomegranate seeds that has sickened 24 people in Australia.

U.S.: Half of hepatitis C patients with private insurance denied life-saving drugs. The number of insurance denials for life-saving hepatitis C drugs remains high across the United States. Private insurers had the highest denial rates, with 52.4 percent of patients denied coverage, while Medicaid denied 34.5 percent of patients.

Findings could lead to treatment of hepatitis B. Researchers have gained new insights into the virus that causes hepatitis B. The discovery, which was published April 27 in the journal eLife, reveals previously unknown details about the capsid, or protein shell, that encloses the virus’ genetic blueprint.

Addressing Palliative Care in Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Patients with chronic liver disease and cirrhosis caused by chronic hepatitis B or C and those with alcoholic liver disease are at increased risk for HCC developing. Late detection complicates the management of HCC; however, since approximately 40% of people have advanced disease at diagnosis, when limited therapeutic options remain.  Infectious Disease Advisor discussed the latest insights about integrating palliative care into the treatment.