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Increasing Hepatitis C treatment uptake among HIV-infected patients using an HIV primary care model


Abstract Background Access to Hepatitis C (HCV) care is low among HIV-infected individuals, highlighting the need for new models to deliver care for this population. Methods Retrospective cohort analysis that compared the number of HIV patients who initiated HCV therapy: hepatology (2005–2008) vs. HIV primary care model (2008–2011). Logistic-regression modeling was used to ascertain factors associated with HCV therapy initiation and achievement of sustained viral response (SVR). Results Of 196 and 163 patients that were enrolled in the HIV primary care and hepatology models, 48 and 26 were treated for HCV, respectively (p = 0.043). The HIV/HCV-patient referral rate did not differ during the two study periods (0.10 vs. 0.12/patient-yr, p = 0.18). In unadjusted analysis, predictors (p < 0.05) of HCV treatment initiation included referral to the HIV primary care model (OR: 1.7), a CD4+ count ≥400/mm3 (OR: 1.8) and alanine aminotranferase level ≥63U/L (OR: 1.9). Prior psychiatric medication use correlated negatively with HCV treatment initiation (OR: 0.6, p = 0.045). In adjusted analysis the strongest predictor of HCV treatment initiation was CD4+ count (≥400/mm3, OR: 2.1, p = 0.01). There was no significant difference in either clinic model (primary care vs. hepatology) in the rates of treatment discontinuation due to adverse events (29% vs. 16%), loss to follow-up (8 vs. 8%), or HCV SVR (44 vs. 35%). Conclusions Using a HIV primary care model increased the number of HIV patients who initiate HCV therapy with comparable outcomes to a hepatology model.

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