Parkes, J.; Bennett-Lloyd, B.; Roderick, P.; Rosenberg, W.
April 2003
Gut;Apr2003 Supplement 1, Vol. 52, pA3
Academic Journal
Background: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major health care problem. The publication of the National Strategy for Hepatitis C emphasised the need to scope the current service configuration, workloads, and capacity in the UK in order to implement the improvements in care detailed by the strategy, and to inform future planning of services. BASL and the Liver section of the BSG commissioned this national needs assessment of hepatitis C to gain this knowledge. Aim: To conduct a national survey to determine the workload and configuration of current services available to manage patients with hepatitis C, and to identify models of good practice. Methods: A questionnaire survey was conducted on a purposive sample of consultant members of BASL (n = 49), consultants in infectious diseases (n = 42), a 1:5 sample of GUM and Gl physicians (n = 47, n = 186) stratified by Health Region. Indepth field interviews and semi-structured telephone interviews were conducted where novel or innovative models of care were identified. Results: Preliminary data are reported, with full results available for the BSG meeting. Questionnaire response rate was 75%. Forty per cent of respondents provided a complete service from various clinical settings: hepatology (34%), Gl (50%), and infectious diseases (16%). Total number of patients managed by the respondents was > 23 000 with upward trend over the past 3 years. Seventy-five per cent of referrals to these specialist service providers came with an established diagnosis of HCV. There is variation in practice for treatment decisions. Eligibility for treatment was in range 25-49% with 50-74% receiving treatment. Twenty-four per cent of specialist service providers have outreach clinics. Identified barriers to management include staffing capacity, patient non-attendance, and funding of treatment. Concluslons: Detailed quantitative and qualitative data from this survey will inform the future planning of hepatitis C services. Preliminary...


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