The Week in Review: September 15 – September 22, 2017

Friday, September 22, 2017 News Recap: Access to Treatment: This was a good week in terms of treatment access (but not, unfortunately, in terms of weather or seismic activity: How very, very sad).  Imagine being sick or on treatment in one of these stricken areas! In Canada Epclusa was approved for use in persons co-infected with HIV. This is very good news. Gilead Receives Approval in Canada for Expanded Indication of EPCLUSA® (Sofosbuvir/Velpat...

The Financial Burden of Liver Disease

Liver disease is a common cause of premature death in the UK. Recently, The Lancet Commission on Liver Disease highlighted the financial impact liver disease places on the national healthcare system and businesses, and suggested strategies to reduce these burdens. The negative impacts of liver disease on citizens under the age of 65 in the UK are escalating, particularly in those from low socioeconomic backgrounds. This can be reversed by targeting the th

The Week in Review: August 18 – August 25, 2017

Friday, August 25, 2017 News Recap: Public health issues Hep B risk warning: Tools used in procedures such as callus scraping and cutting toenails could become contaminated with the virus and remain contaminated because of the sterilization practices followed. Public health authorities in Owen Sound have identified a local foot care clinic as a potential source of hepatitis B and are warning patients – other than orthotics patients – to consult a doc...

Major UK Supermarket ‘May Have Infected Thousands With Hepatitis E’ – Updated

The big chain has yet to be identified. The unknown supermarket’s own-brand sausages and ham were found to be the common link between those infected. [Update: The supermarket that unintentionally infected people with a strain of hepatitis has now been identified as Tesco.] A major UK supermarket may have unintentionally infected thousands of people with a pig virus which causes liver and neurological problems, Public Health England has found. The b

The Week in Review: August 4 – August 11, 2017

Friday, August 11, 2017 Research & Discoveries Melbourne scientists are creating mini-livers in a dish MELBOURNE scientists are creating mini livers in a dish using a world-first combination of human cells in an ambitious bid to grow liver tissue for transplants. The tiny experimental organs – developed from cells donated by cancer patients – will be used to test drugs and eventually treat disease. Routine hospital tool found to predict poor ...

UK rations hepatitis B vaccine amid global shortage

UK health officials are putting a temporary limit on who can have a hepatitis B vaccination because stocks are running low. The move is in response to the wider, global shortage of the jab caused by manufacturing issues. UK travellers are being told they may not be able to get it before they leave Britain for higher-risk countries. Babies and high-risk groups will be prioritised under the measures that are expected to continue into 2018. A spokes

The Week in Review: July 7 – July 14, 2017

Friday, July 14, 2017 News Recap Local New measures boost addiction treatment access in Victoria New efforts to expand treatment for opioid users in Victoria are putting addiction specialists in hospital emergency departments and supporting family doctors who provide opioid substitution therapy for patients. The initiatives by Island Health and the Victoria Divisions of Family Practice are intended to dovetail with the work of the South Island Ra...

Britain launches public inquiry into historic blood supply scandal

Approximately 2,400 people died beginning in the 1970s, others contracted diseases British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday ordered a public inquiry into how contaminated blood was used to treat thousands in the 1970s and '80s, killing 2,400 people, according to officials. Authorities had previously looked into the scandal, in which thousands of public health patients — many of them hemophiliacs — contracted HIV or hepatitis C through blood treatm

On-the-spot hepatitis test being developed in Swansea

An on-the-spot test to diagnose three types of hepatitis is being developed. It would use a patient's saliva instead of blood and the test would be as simple and quick as a blood glucose sensor or a pregnancy test. Current screening for hepatitis A, B and C involves taking blood with results taking up to seven days. The two-year project is a joint venture between the UK and China with Swansea playing a key role through Swansea University's Centre fo

AbbVie’s 8-week hepatitis C drug granted early access in UK

A special Early Access to Medicines (EAMs) status has been granted in the UK to AbbVie’s as-yet-unapproved treatment for hepatitis C. The glecaprevir/pibrentasivr (g/p) combination is a ‘pan-genotypic’ drug  currently under review by the European Medicines Agency, and is part of a rapid evolution in treatments for the potentially deadly liver infection. AbbVie  is looking to compete with Gilead’s Epclusa, which was the first pan-genotypic hep C drug to