Drink and Drugs News DDN 1804 - Page 4

News STEP UP TESTING TO MEET HEP C TARGET, SAY MPS ‘SIGNIFICANTLY GREATER’ numbers of people need to be tested, diagnosed and treated in order to eliminate hepatitis C, according to a report from the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Liver Health. England needs to agree on a national elimination strategy if it is to make the most of a ‘once in a generation’ opportunity to eradicate the virus, the group stresses. The report is the result of an inquiry by cross-party MPs and peers, in which expert contributors ‘overwhelmingly agreed’ that England is currently not on track to achieve either the NHS target of eliminating the virus by 2025 or the World Health Organization target of elimination by 2030. ‘The upcoming deal between NHS England and the pharmaceutical industry must include innovative new measures to find those still living with hepatitis C and engage them into treatment,’ says the APPG. The report urges the government to ‘express its explicit support’ for the elimination agenda, and make sure that the agreement between the NHS and industry includes ambitious national and regional targets, as well as mechanisms to make sure funds