Hepatitis C illustration as blue cells. Credit: Shutterstock

Monitoring hepatitis C treatment uptake in Australia Issue 6, February 2017

This report summarises data on the prescription and distribution of hepatitis C treatments and provides insight into the initial phase of the roll-out of DAA therapy in Australia. 

Key findings
  • An estimated 25,890 individuals initiated direct acting antiviral (DAA) treatment for chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection during March to September 2016, equating to 11% of the people living with chronic HCV in Australia. The total number of DAA initiations in 2016 (March – December) is estimated to be between 30,390 and 33,390.
  • Of individuals initiating DAA treatment during March to September 2016, 66% were men, 34% were women, and 40% were ≤50 years old. The proportion of individuals ≤50 years old increased from 28% in March to 54% in September.
  • The most commonly prescribed regimen was sofosbuvir/ledipasvir for 57%, followed by sofosbuvir+daclatasvir for 38%. Of individuals initiated on sofosbuvir/ledipasvir, 13% were prescribed an 8-week course, 74% a 12-week course, and 13% a 24-week course. Of individuals initiated on sofosbuvir+daclatasvir, 62% were prescribed a 12-week course, and 38% a 24-week course.
  • Most individuals received their prescriptions from gastroenterologists (52%), followed by supervised medical officers (i.e., interns, temporary resident doctors, and non-vocationally registered doctors; 15%), and general practitioners (GPs, 13%).
  • Overall, 65% of individuals received their prescriptions from specialists. The proportion of individuals receiving their prescriptions from GPs increased from 4% in March to 19% in September.