Hepatitis C is one type of hepatitis caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). It usually spreads through contact with infected blood. It can also spread through sex with an infected person and from mother to baby during childbirth. Hepatitis C causes liver inflammation and damage, including cirrhosis. Most people who are infected with hepatitis C don't have any symptoms for years. There are no vaccines currently available for hepatitis C, but there are things you can do to protect yourself. Speak with your health care provider about prevention.
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Programs + Services
The Center for Liver Disease at Tufts MC in Boston specializes in managing cirrhosis, fatty liver, viral hepatitis, primary biliary cirrhosis and primary sclerosing cholangitis.
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Research + Clinical Trials
With the advent of well-tolerated highly-curative treatment, eradication of hepatitis C virus (HCV) from the United States is possible. Despite guidelines, high HCV prevalence (18-85%, depending on the state) and modeling demonstrating cost-effectiveness, HCV care in corrections’ systems is infrequent. Racial and ethnic minorities comprise the majority (>60%) of HCV cases in US correctional settings. Overlaid on health disparities imposed by incarceration, there are racial disparities in corrections’ settings as evidenced by higher rates of HCV-related morbidity and mortality in incarcerated Non-Whites than Whites.
Increasing access to HCV testing during incarceration with linkage to HCV treatment in the community following release is a feasible approach to decrease health disparities. Recognizing the gaps in knowledge about HCV testing and opportunities for improvement, I have partnered with key stakeholders along the HCV care pathway to evaluate the current state of HCV testing in MA jails. My goal is to interview inmates and other stakeholders (including people who work and people in the community who help deliver care to people who are in jail) to betterat the jail understand barriers and facilitators to testing and treatment in the jails. Examples of important stakeholders include anyone who makes decisions about Hep C testing and treatment for people in jail. This included sheriffs, clinicians, public health specialists, pharmacists, industry representatives.
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