Publications & Reports

Model projections on the impact of HCV treatment in the prevention of HCV transmission among people who inject drugs in Europe.

Hannah Fraser, Natasha K Martin, Henrikki Brummer-Korvenkontio, Patrizia Carrieri, Olav Dalgard, John Dillon, David Goldberg, Sharon Hutchinson, Marie Jauffret-Roustide, Martin Kaberg, Amy A Matser, Mojca Maticic, Havard Midgard, Viktor Mravcik, Anne Ovrehus, Maria Prins, Jens Reimer, Geert Robaeys, Bernd Schulte, Daniela K van Santen, Ruth Zimmermann, Peter Vickerman, Matthew Hickman
Population Health Sciences, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK. Electronic address:


BACKGROUND & AIMS: Prevention of hepatitis C virus (HCV) transmission among people who inject drugs (PWID) is critical for eliminating HCV in Europe. We estimated the impact of current and scaled-up HCV treatment with and without scaling up opioid substitution therapy (OST) and needle and syringe programmes (NSPs) across Europe over the next 10years. METHODS: We collected data on PWID HCV treatment rates, PWID prevalence, HCV prevalence, OST, and NSP coverage from 11 European settings. We parameterised an HCV transmission model to setting-specific data that project chronic HCV prevalence and incidence among PWID. RESULTS: At baseline, chronic HCV prevalence varied from <25% (Slovenia/Czech Republic) to >55% (Finland/Sweden), and <2% (Amsterdam/Hamburg/Norway/Denmark/Sweden) to 5% (Slovenia/Czech Republic) of chronically infected PWID were treated annually. The current treatment rates using new direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) may achieve observable reductions in chronic prevalence (38-63%) in 10years in Czech Republic, Slovenia, and Amsterdam. Doubling the HCV treatment rates will reduce prevalence in other sites (12-24%; Belgium/Denmark/Hamburg/Norway/Scotland), but is unlikely to reduce prevalence in Sweden and Finland. Scaling-up OST and NSP to 80% coverage with current treatment rates using DAAs could achieve observable reductions in HCV prevalence (18-79%) in all sites. Using DAAs, Slovenia and Amsterdam are projected to reduce incidence to 2 per 100 person years or less in 10years. Moderate to substantial increases in the current treatment rates are required to achieve the same impact elsewhere, from 1.4 to 3 times (Czech Republic and France), 5-17 times (France, Scotland, Hamburg, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, and Sweden), to 200 times (Finland). Scaling-up OST and NSP coverage to 80% in all sites reduces treatment scale-up needed by 20-80%. CONCLUSIONS: The scale-up of HCV treatment and other interventions is needed in most settings to minimise HCV transmission among PWID in Europe. LAY SUMMARY: Measuring the amount of HCV in the population of PWID is uncertain. To reduce HCV infection to minimal levels in Europe will require scale-up of both HCV treatment and other interventions that reduce injecting risk (especially OST and provision of sterile injecting equipment).

Link to publisher’s web site


  • Journal: Journal of Hepatology
  • Published: 01/03/2018
  • Volume: 68
  • Issue: 3
  • Pagination: 402-411



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