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Crewe Substance Misuse Service achieves micro-elimination of hepatitis C

24 May 2024

In a significant public health achievement, the Crewe Substance Misuse Service has achieved micro-elimination of hepatitis C (hep C) among its clients. 

This milestone signifies a major step forward in protecting the health of the community and reducing the burden of this chronic liver disease.

Micro-elimination is a strategy focused on eliminating hep C within specific populations. To achieve this status, the Crewe service has ensured that:

  • 100 per cent of people using the service have been offered a hep C test;
  • 90 per cent of people with a history of injecting have been tested within the last 12 months; and
  • 90 per cent of people who’ve tested positive for hep C have started or completed treatment.

Matt Tyrer small size“This is a tremendous accomplishment for the Change, Grow, Live (CGL) provider team and the clients they serve,” said Dr Matt Tyrer, director of public health at Cheshire East Council.

“Hepatitis C is a serious health threat, but it’s also highly treatable. By prioritising testing and treatment, CGL are empowering individuals to overcome addiction and achieve better health outcomes.

“This success story demonstrates the power of targeted interventions in addressing health disparities within vulnerable populations.”

Micro-elimination of hep C offers several key benefits:

  • Improved health for individuals previously infected with the virus. Effective treatment can cure hep C, preventing liver damage and associated health complications;
  • Reduced risk of transmission. Early diagnosis and treatment significantly decrease the chances of spreading the virus to others; and
  • Alleviated strain on healthcare systems. Successfully treating hep C lowers the need for future medical interventions associated with the disease.

Moving forward the Crewe service remains committed to maintaining this achievement, and ongoing efforts will focus on:

  • Sustaining high testing rates among new clients;
  • Ensuring continued access to treatment for diagnosed individuals; and
  • Collaborating with other healthcare providers to promote broader community awareness about hep C prevention and treatment.

Significant progress is being made in Macclesfield where the team are also very close to achieving micro-elimination of hep C.