Advertisement

It’s Time for a Simplified Approach to Hepatitis B Elimination

Open AccessPublished:October 13, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gastha.2022.10.004
      This paper is only available as a PDF. To read, Please Download here.

      Abstract

      Background and Aims

      Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection continues to threaten millions of lives across the globe, despite universal vaccination efforts. Current guidelines for screening, vaccination, and treatment are complex and have left too many people undiagnosed or improperly managed. Antiviral therapy has been shown to significantly reduce the incidence of liver-related complications, including liver cancer. However, the complexity of existing guidelines can make it difficult to identify which patients to target for treatment, and recommendations that are difficult to implement in real-world settings pose a barrier to eligible patients to receive therapy and contribute to health disparities in HBV care. The goal of this global expert panel was to gain consensus on a streamlined approach to HBV care to facilitate implementation of HBV intervention and treatment, especially in the primary care setting.

      Methods

      A group of eight liver and infectious disease specialists attended a meeting in January 2021 with the objective of gaining consensus on a streamlined algorithm for HBV care that would encourage implementation of HBV intervention and treatment.

      Results

      We have created a comprehensive perspective highlighting screening optimization, diagnostic workup, treatment, and monitoring. This treatment algorithm is designed to provide a streamlined visual pathway for risk stratification and management of patients with HBV that can be adapted in various care settings.

      Conclusion

      Simplification of guidelines will be critical to achieving health equity to address this public health threat and achieve HBV elimination.

      Key words