Despite a high burden of hepatitis C virus (HCV) and HIV infection among IDUs and the advent of effective therapies, assessment and treatment remain limited. The current review focuses on the management of HCV and HIV among IDUs, focusing particularly on recent strategies to enhance assessment, uptake and response to HCV and HIV treatment.
There are compelling data demonstrating that with the appropriate programs, treatment for HIV and HCV among IDUs is successful. However, assessment and treatment for HCV and HIV lags far behind the numbers of IDUs who could benefit from therapy, related to systems, provider and patient-related barriers to care. Strategies for enhancing assessment and treatment for HCV and HIV have been developed, including novel models integrating HCV/HIV care within existing community-based and drug and alcohol clinics, innovative methods for education delivery (including peer-support models) and directly observed therapy.
As we move forward, research must move beyond demonstrating that HCV and HIV infections can be successfully treated among IDUs. There is clear evidence that this is both feasible and effective. Novel strategies to enhance assessment, uptake and response to treatment should be evaluated among IDUs to elucidate mechanisms to enhance care for this underserved population.
aThe Kirby Institute for Infection and Immunity in Society, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
bThe Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, The University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Correspondence to Jason Grebely, The Kirby Institute for Infection and Immunity in Society, University of New South Wales, CFI Building, Corner of Boundary and West Streets, Sydney, NSW 2010, AustraliaTel: +61 2 93850900; fax: +61 2 93850876; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org