Summary of Recommendations Regarding Viral Hepatitis Services
5-1. Federally funded health-insurance programs—such as Medicare, Medicaid, and the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program—should incorporate guidelines for risk-factor screening for hepatitis B and hepatitis C as a required core component of preventive care so that at-risk people receive serologic testing for hepatitis B virus and hepatitis C virus and chronically infected patients receive appropriate medical management.
5-2. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in conjunction with other federal agencies and state agencies, should provide resources for the expansion of community-based programs that provide hepatitis B screening, testing, and vaccination services that target foreign-born populations.
Illicit Drug Users
5-3. Federal, state, and local agencies should expand programs to reduce the risk of hepatitis C virus infection through injection-drug use by providing comprehensive hepatitis C virus prevention programs. At a minimum, the programs should include access to sterile needle syringes and drug-preparation equipment because the shared use of these materials has been shown to lead to transmission of hepatitis C virus.
5-4. Federal and state governments should expand services to reduce the harm caused by chronic hepatitis B and hepatitis C. The services should include testing to detect infection, counseling to reduce alcohol use and secondary transmission, hepatitis B vaccination, and referral for or provision of medical management.
Health services related to viral hepatitis prevention, screening, and medical management are both limited and fragmented among entities at the federal, state, and local levels. Numerous federal agencies administer or fund some viral hepatitis–related services, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Health Resources and Services