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Hepatitis C - Simplifying the role of the GP in diagnosis and treatment

3.00 QI&CPD - Category 2 Point(s) / 4.00 Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine PRPD Points

Hepatitis C ­ Simplifying the role of the GP


Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is an infection which, when present for more than 6 months, is defined as chronic. Transmission of HCV is almost exclusively parenteral, with global prevalence estimates among injecting drug users (IDUs) reported at 67%. In Australia, most new hepatitis C infections are related to the sharing of injecting equipment. Chronic HCV affects approximately 200,000 individuals in Australia, commonly causing chronic liver disease, which in many cases can lead to cirrhosis, decompensated disease, liver cancer or death. Despite the significant morbidity and mortality associated with chronic HCV, however, it has been estimated that less than 2% of those infected receive treatment.

Successful HCV prevention strategies in Australia primarily require a focus on people who inject drugs. These strategies also require a combination of harm reduction services, such as opioid substitution treatment on the one hand, and HCV treatment provision on the other.

This activity has been approved by The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners QI&CPD Program.

Total Points: 3.00 Point(s) (Category 2)

This online CME event is an Accredited Distance/Remote based education module as defined by the Professional Development Program of the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine. ACRRM member participation and information will be noted and sent directly to the ACRRM for accreditation processing. Please allow 30 days for ACRRM to send you your points.

This activity is approved for 4.00 PRPD Points.

This program has been reviewed and approved / co-sponsored by Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine (ASHM) and Gastroenterological Society of Australia - Australian Liver Association (GESA-ALA)


Jacob George,
Professor, University of Sydney
Dept Head, Gastroenterology & Hepatology
Westmead Hospital
Westmead, NSW
Jeff Allen Regnis,
Conjoint Lecturer, University of Newcastle
Newcastle, NSW

After completing this education module, participants will have increased confidence in:

  1. Identifying and assessing at-risk patients for hepatitis C virus (HCV)
  2. Outlining a treatment approach for patients with mild to moderate hepatitis C in the general practice setting
  3. Minimising barriers to treatment adherence as part of the hepatitis C management plan, including adverse effects and drug interactions*
  4. Recognising those patients with HCV who can be managed in primary care and those requiring referral to a specialist
*(RACGP safety outcome)

Faculty Video Questions answered by Jacob George, MB, PhD, BS, FRACP and lab test instructional video by Jeff Allen Regnis, BMed, PhD, FRACGP

  • Talking about HCV risk factors can be difficult at times. How would you recommend GPs broach the subject of potential risk factors for chronic HCV infection with their patients?
  • How should GPs decide whether to order transient elastography rather than assessing non-invasive serum markers for their patients with chronic HCV? In which situations would you recommend GPs order both?
  • In what ways can GPs help their patients with chronic HCV due to injecting drug use reduce their risk of re-infection?
  • Which factors should GPs consider when selecting an appropriate DAA therapy? Are there any situations in which DAA therapy is not appropriate for a patient with chronic HCV?
  • How can a GP identify a chronic HCV patient who is not ready to commence therapy? What steps can a GP take to address such a patient's treatment readiness?
  • How do GPs order lab tests? Watch the instructional video provided by Jeff Allen Regnis, BMed, PhD, FRACGP

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