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STD 2016: HCV Infection and Reinfection Among Men Who Have Sex with Men

Public health officials in Michigan have identified a cluster of more than 20 cases of apparently sexually transmitted hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection among HIV-positive gay and bisexual men, according to a report at the 2016 STD Conference last week in Atlanta. Routine HCV screening at sexual health clinics can help detect more HCV infections among gay men, and prevention measures are needed to address the risk of HCV reinfection after spontaneous clearance or a cure, researchers concluded in recent related journal articles.

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EASL 2016: High Incidence of HCV Reinfection Among HIV+ Gay Men in Western Europe

There is a very high incidence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) reinfection among HIV-positive men who have sex with men (MSM) in western Europe, according to research presented at the European Association for the Study of the Liver's International Liver Congress (EASL 2016) this week in Barcelona.  Investigators found that a quarter of HIV-positive gay men who cleared an initial HCV infection were reinfected within 3 years. The researchers believe that current prevention strategies are failing, and called for intensive monitoring of people who have apparently cleared HCV infection.

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AASLD 2015: HCV Infection During Anal Sex May Happen without Blood, Study Finds

Hepatitis C virus is present in large enough quantities in the rectal fluid of men with HIV and hepatitis C coinfection to permit HCV transmission without the presence of blood, researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City reported Sunday at the AASLD Liver Meeting in San Francisco.

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U.S. Government Releases New Guidance for Syringe Program Funding

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has released new guidance regarding use of federal funds to pay for many aspects of syringe service programs aimed at reducing the risk of HIV and viral hepatitis transmission among people who inject drugs. The guidance follows a change in federal law that lifts the overall ban on syringe service funding, although the new rules do not allow programs to pay for needles or syringes themselves.

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IHRC 2015: Hepatitis C Treatment as Prevention Must Address Concerns of People Who Inject Drugs

While epidemiologists and public health experts are excited about the potential of new hepatitis C drugs to limit onward transmission of the virus among people who inject drugs, some strategies ignore profound barriers to drug users engaging with healthcare and their broader needs. For "treatment as prevention" to be ethical and acceptable to this people who inject drugs, enabling treatment and policy environments need to be created, according to reports at the 24th International Harm Reduction Conference last month in Kuala Lumpur.

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