A coalition of hepatitis C advocates is asking organizations to sign on to their request to Congress to increase funding to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for hepatitis C. Funding would be used towards implementing the CDC National Hepatitis C Prevention Strategy and recommendations from the National Institutes of Health's 2002 Consensus Statement on the Management of Hepatitis C.
From the CDC's Executive Summary of the national prevention strategy:
"The goals of the National Hepatitis C Prevention Strategy are to lower the incidence of acute hepatitis C in the United States and reduce the disease burden from chronic HCV infection. Achievement of these goals requires: 1) harm reduction programs directed at persons at increased risk for infection to reduce the incidence of new HCV infections; 2) counseling, testing, and medical evaluation and management of infected persons to control HCV-related chronic liver disease; 3) surveillance to evaluate the effectiveness of prevention activities; and 4) research to provide answers to questions pertinent to the prevention and control of hepatitis C."
The full strategy, released in 2001, is available as a PDF file here.
Here's the message from hepatitis C advocates:
The National Hepatitis C Advocacy Council (NHCAC) needs your organizations support!
Below is a sign-on letter to show your support for the increased hepatitis C
appropriations requested by members of National Hepatitis C Advocacy
Council. NHCAC has delivered this letter to Senators and Congressmen
supporting the “Hepatitis C Epidemic Control and Prevention Act.”
WHO SHOULD RESPOND: Organizations serving people with, or at risk for,
hepatitis C (Please do not sign as individuals, if you are not a member of
an organization but are in support of the appropriation request and your
local group is not listed, call your local organization, make sure they are
in support of this and are signing on. Also, please register yourself and/or
your organization for our “Legislative Update” email action alert list at
the NHCAC website.)
WHEN SHOULD YOU RESPOND: Organizations wishing to sign on should e-mail by 5 pm EST, Wednesday, April 14, 2004.
WHERE SHOULD YOU RESPOND: Send emails to Lorren Sandt.
The “Hepatitis C Epidemic Control and Prevention Act” can be viewed here.
Please help distribute this letter and encourage organizations to sign-on.
Full text of the letter appears below.