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France removes hepatitis C treatment prescriber restrictions—But what is the impact of the delay for key populations?

Abstract : As pointed out by Socías et al,1 addressing behavioural and socio‐structural barriers to hepatitis C (HCV) treatment is essential among people who inject drugs (PWID), a high‐burden, key population for HCV elimination worldwide, still insufficiently targeted by national HCV strategies.2 However, we believe that healthcare systems‐related barriers also need to be addressed. In France, until recently, prescription of direct‐acting antivirals (DAAs) was restricted to HCV specialists. Since 20 May 2019, any physician, specialist or otherwise, can prescribe DAAs according to a simplified model of HCV care.3, 4 This is a major advance towards HCV elimination in PWID in France, where PWID already benefit from an estimated 80% coverage of methadone and buprenorphine, provided at the primary care level. However, delaying the removal of prescriber restrictions may have increased geographical disparities in access to DAAs. We used data from the French national healthcare system to investigate this.
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Submitted on : Friday, May 15, 2020 - 1:43:43 PM
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Fabienne Marcellin, Perrine Roux, Jeffrey Lazarus, Benjamin Rolland, Patrizia Carrieri. France removes hepatitis C treatment prescriber restrictions—But what is the impact of the delay for key populations?. Liver International, Wiley-Blackwell, 2019, 39 (12), pp.2418-2419. ⟨10.1111/liv.14208⟩. ⟨hal-02589750⟩

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