Thursday, July 29, 2010

Hepatitis C Large Expenses


Hepatitis C becomes a public health time bomb load. Hepatitis C virus infection has a great opportunity to be chronic, causing death. In fact, there is no vaccine for the disease and very expensive medical costs must be borne by the patient.

This was revealed in a public discussion "Step into the Future Treatment of Hepatitis C in Indonesia," organized networks of HIV Infected People Indonesia (JOTHI), Thursday (29/7).

The number of people with hepatitis C in Indonesia is estimated around four million. In Indonesia, the number of patients with hepatitis B and C to reach 30 million people. While the reported number of positive hepatitis C were recorded in the Ministry of Health in October 2007 to October 2009 were 17 999 cases. Travel hepatitis C is often asymptomatic for many years so that a person does not realize that living with the virus and potentially infectious.

One speaker, doctors' Internal Medicine Specialist. " Kramat Hospital 128, Dyah Agustina Waluyo, said the hepatitis virus in the blood and body fluids. Transmission of hepatitis B and C among others through blood transfusion, unsafe sexual contact, sharing needles or sharp instruments are not sterile, dialysis, organ transplantation, and vertical transmission from mothers to their babies. Among IDUs, the risk of contracting hepatitis C is very large.

Unlike existing hepatitis B vaccine, hepatitis C vaccine has not been found so difficult to do prevention. Disease are most at risk of hepatitis C develop chronic and lead to liver cirrhosis or even liver cancer.

Treatment of hepatitis C is still a burden because the therapy is very expensive and long. HCV combination therapy of two drugs for 42 weeks a range of cost USD 40 million-USD 150 million.

Tests to determine the presence of virus was also much more expensive. For HCV antibody test costs about Rp 200,000. While RNA testing to determine the type of virus it will cost about USD 2 million. With the expensive treatment, lack of vaccines, and the relative ease of transmission, hepatitis C can become a public health time bomb.

Less attention

Outbreak of HIV/AIDS is also exacerbating the situation of hepatitis C. Virus transmission model similar to making HIV/AIDS patients are often also infected with hepatitis C, particularly among injecting drug users.

"Unlike other infectious diseases, like malaria, HIV / AIDS, and tuberculosis have become caring world and a lot of aid funds, hepatitis C is still less attention," said Abdullah Denovan JOTHI Coordinator.

Staff of Sub Directorate AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases Control of Communicable Diseases Directorate General of Health Ministry Hariadi Jump Wardana Vishnu said, an estimated 10-30 percent of people infected with HIV are also infected with hepatitis C. HIV/AIDS virus increases the risk of cirrhosis and speed became more severe.

Dyah Agustina added, with hepatitis C infection, the immune difficult people with HIV has increased despite antiretroviral therapy.

Abdullah Denovan said, limitations on access to hepatitis C drug makes people with HIV lose the spirit of healthy living. "HIV can be treated already, but their lives remain at risk of hepatitis C," he said.

Hariadi admit, there is no specific section dealing with hepatitis C in the Ministry of Health because it not only caused by viral hepatitis, but can also be due to other factors, such as metabolism and cancer malignancy. "Debate, the disease went into part which deals with infectious diseases or not," he said. Sub AIDS has had a special budget treatment of hepatitis C special assistance for people with HIV / AIDS so that their burden reduced. (Ine)

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