All candidates running for office in this 2017 provincial election have been sent this questionnaire and background information. Results from candidates and parties will be posted in blogs leading up to the election.
Our question: Do you support PHCN’s 5 Point Plan to help eliminate hepatitis C from BC by 2030?
Feel free to check in with your candidates in your riding about our question. Find your candidates here: http://elections.bc.ca/2017-general-election/candidates/
Feel free to email us at BCElection2017@pacifichepc.org 🙂
Pacific Hep C Network
BC Election 2017 Candidate Questionnaire
New hepatitis C medications are true game-changers. Most treatment courses now take less than three months with minimal side effects and cure rates close to 100 per cent. BC and other provincial governments recently announced a deal with drug manufacturers to get even better value for taxpayers. With the right plan we can eliminate hepatitis C from BC within a generation.
The hepatitis C virus can cause damage for decades with few or no symptoms and can lead to liver cancer and irreversible liver failure. It is one of the five major causes of infectious-illness death globally along with HIV, hepatitis B malaria, and TB.
The group most impacted — some 60,000 people in BC — are those born between 1945 to 1964 (the older adult age cohort). Many have lived with the infection for years but have not gone for testing because neither they –nor their doctors – believe they are at risk.
While a hepatitis C-free future is possible a significant challenge remains: identifying those living with the virus that have not been diagnosed, assessed or treated for their hep C infection. British Columbia needs to refresh its hepatitis C strategy, reinforce health system readiness and expand awareness to motivate high-risk populations to get tested.
We are proposing a five-point action plan to help eliminate hepatitis C from BC by 2030:
- Refresh BC Hepatitis C Strategy: Work with stakeholders, including citizens impacted by hepatitis C, to refresh and fund a phased plan with defined timelines.
- Update Testing Guidelines: To include older adult screening and/or normalized hepatitis C screening for the general population.
- More Continuum of Care Resources: Increase capacity (system and individual health care provider) to test, diagnose, assess, monitor, treat and follow up all people living with hepatitis C in BC.
- Expanded Awareness: Implement strategies to motivate at-risk populations (age cohort, immigrants, Indigenous people, injection drug users) to seek screening and care for hepatitis C
- Decrease Stigma: Address stigma and discrimination towards those living with and at-risk for hepatitis C within the health care system (i.e. hepatitis C education; cultural competence training requirements).
As you seek elected office we want to know if you support our objectives.
Question: Do you support PHCN’s 5 Point Plan to help eliminate hepatitis C from BC by 2030?
Our vision is for a British Columbia free from new hepatitis C infections with the best possible care and treatment for those living with the virus.