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The Newsletter of Hepatitis Victoria

December 2013

Good Liver Hepatitis doesn’t discriminate, neither do we and neither should anyone else.

Health literacy in a culturally and linguistically diverse society Shinen Wong, Health Promotion Officer at Hepatitis Victoria, discusses what needs to be done to ensure full equity in accessing health care for all groups.

Hepatitis Heroes The anti-discrimination campaign begins. Parliamentary Secretary for Health, Ms Crozier launched our online campaign and invited the public to make the pledge: Hepatitis doesn’t discriminate and neither do I.

Discrimination and health care Leah Higgins, Integrated Hepatitis C Nurse Consultant, is interviewed by Marg Sutherland, Health Promotions Officer at 1 Hepatitis Victoria.



Contact and postal address:

Melanie Eagle



Hepatitis Victoria

CEO Telephone: 9385 9102

From the desk of the Chief Executive Officer.


In the news

7 7 8

Lou Reed’s death

Suite 5, 200 Sydney Road, Brunswick, Victoria. 3056 Telephone: (03) 9380 4644 Facsimile: (03) 9380 4688 Email: Website:


1800 703 003

Garry Irving Programs and Operations Manager Telephone: 9385 9109 Lisa Nulty Office Coodinator Telephone: 9380 4644 Judi Brewster Health Promotion Officer Telephone: 9385 9111 Kristy Garner Development Coordinator Telephone: 9385 9105 Marg Sutherland Health Promotion Officer Telephone: 9385 9103 Melissa Wright Health Promotion Officer Telephone: 9385 9104 Garry Sattell Community Support Services Coordinator Telephone: 9385 9110

Summer edition Good Liver is produced by Hepatitis Victoria, with support from the Victorian Government. The opinions and language expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of Hepatitis Victoria or the Department of Health. Images are used for illustrative purposes only and have no connection to hepatitis.

Reader response Your comments or experiences in regard to any articles in the Good Liver are welcome. Call, write or email:


Shinen Wong Health Promotion Officer Telephone: 9385 9108 Jane Little Hepatitis Champions Project Officer Telephone: 9380 4644

From the desk of the Chief Executive Officer

were nominated for the Minister for Health’s Volunteer Awards and the Victorian Disability Sector Awards. During the event we also asked people to share with us their wishes for the future. A video of what they told us is available from

Moving In – New staff

Engaging young people: Street Shot

Hepatitis Heroes

Street Shot is Hepatitis Victoria’s annual

Anti-discrimination campaign began

hepatitis C photography project and is in its


Personal stories

Meet our two Hepatitis Heroes


Health literacy in a culturally and liguistically diverse society


Discrimination and health care

An interview


The right to health care on the Inside


Hepatitis C – a new report

Understanding care and stigma from a social perspective


Noticeboard and Fred Negro cartoon 20 Liver clinics list



Alicia Lowndes Marketing, Communications and Online Services Coordinator Telephone: 9385 9107 Claire Ferrier Community Participation Officer Telephone: 9385 9106




fourth successive year. This year we varied the program it to ensure greater involvement from the affected community by including



2013 marked the 21st year of operation for Hepatitis Victoria. To celebrate the occasion many of our programs and activities focused on supporting and acknowledging the people who have helped get us here and those who will take us forward. Many people have overcome stigma and discrimination and come forward to share their stories. Some of

them as part of the education sessions and judging panel. We found that the young people related better and were more engaged this year as a result. This year we had our highest number of entries, with over 170 images from 17 schools. Entries can still be viewed on our Facebook page: www.

World Hepatitis Day: Sharing of personal experience One of Hepatitis Victoria’s aims for World

the year’s highlights include:

Hepatitis Day this year was to reduce stigma

New 21st anniversary logo

and discrimination. Hepatitis Victoria believes

The first activity we undertook to mark our 21st year was a new logo and tagline. We decided to build on the World Hepatitis Day slogan “this is hepatitis” and took it one step further – “WE ARE Hepatitis Victoria”. We felt this created a sense of pride, ownership and community spirit. We added a tagline to acknowledge our history but also our path ahead: Celebrating 21 Years – Our Past, Our People, Our Future. This new branding has been used in a variety of contexts including a new webpage dedicated to our 21st. The page features an interactive tour of our history, personal stories and videos. Visit

Volunteer involvement A highlight this year was our Cheers Volunteers event held during National Volunteers Week in May to thank our supporters. The event also congratulated two Hepatitis Victoria staff members who

that a constructive way to start talking about this is to hear from people personally affected. On Friday 26th July, a panel of five speakers living with hepatitis B or C shared their stories with an audience of partner organisation representatives, the affected community and key stakeholders. A powerful and moving discussion followed

Public Speakers Bureau: Training and learning from other states Hepatitis Victoria has recently established our first Public Speakers Bureau. The aim of the Bureau is to empower individuals living with viral hepatitis, along with affected others, to educate the community through speaking engagements about their own experiences. Speakers undergo intensive training that allows them to feel confident telling their story and responding to audience enquiries. We already have over ten people trained, some of whom have experience with hepatitis C and some with hepatitis B. These trained speakers have already been invited to speak at a variety of events and training sessions such as the HIV and Hepatitis C pre and post testing counselling course and the National Hepatitis Conference. Please contact us if you are interested in becoming a Public Speaker or having a Public Speaker present at your event.

21st Birthday HEP HEROES celebration! The year came to a tremendous finale when we held our 21st birthday celebration at Federation Square, and launched our Hep Heroes campaign with our first 21 heroes profiled on our new website and mixing with the crowds. More information on this is contained in the pages that follow, and can be viewed in action on our YouTube channel

“Five years ago, we wouldn’t have had anyone confident enough to share their story publicly, so we have come a long way”

The goal of this campaign, which you can still pledge your support for, is to show the people behind the virus in order to provide a positive lived experience and reduce stigma. A confronting aspect has been to become aware of the reluctance of people to overtly associate themselves with hepatitis due to fear of peoples’ responses. On the flip side it has been inspiring to join with so many brave and inspiring people who have gone public and spread the word. These people – our heroes – are the ones who keep us motivated

Garry Sattell

and enthused.

over afternoon tea with some people disclosing their status publicly for the first time. Some in the audience were even inspired enough to sign up to become positive speakers themselves.

Community Services Coordinator


In the news Excerpts from recently released reports

New figures confirm 2 in 100 Australians living with chronic viral hepatitis The release of the Kirby Institute’s 2013 Annual Surveillance Report has confirmed that almost 2% of the total Australian population is currently living with chronic viral hepatitis (hepatitis B and C). The Report, which focuses on HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexually

Transmissible Infections in Australia, estimates that 230,000 people in Australia are living with hepatitis C and 207,000 are living with hepatitis B, together this represents almost 2% of the population. “The number of people affected by chronic hepatitis continues to increase, as do the health challenges they face, including an increase in the number of people requiring liver transplants as a result of hepatitis,” Hepatitis Victoria’s CEO, Ms Melanie Eagle, said.

“Hepatitis C is not only a liver disease and a cause of cirrhosis, but also a mental, psychological, familiar, and social disease. The stigma that the infected person sometimes carries is tremendous having multiple consequences. The main cause is lack of adequate information, even in the health profession setting. But, besides the “drama” of being infected, health professionals, family, society and the infected patients, must be aware of the chance of real cure and total and definitive

Participants believed stigmatising and discriminatory attitudes

elimination of the virus.”

The concerns raised by the market research prompted AIVL to

Source: Hepatitis C, stigma and cure, Rui Tato Marinho and David Pires Barreira, World J Gastroenterol 2013. October 28; 19(40): 6703-6709

Report on stigma and discrimination towards people who inject drugs

and actions would discourage people from taking up the practice of injecting drug use. These views were widely and strongly held, despite the wealth of research evidence highlighting the extremely harmful effects of stigma and discrimination on people who inject drugs and the lack of evidence to support discrimination as an effective deterrent to illicit drug use.

seek further resources and explore a range of questions from the perspective of people who inject drugs. In particular, AVIl sought to explore how current attitudes towards our community have developed over time and left people who use drugs in a situation where their lives are viewed to have no value. A full copy of the report is available from:

The 2013 Surveillance Report shows that in 2012 there were 2,234


Chronic hepatitis B and C: exploring perceived stigma, disease information, and health-related quality of life

Comparatively there were 314 new cases of HIV in Victoria and a


notifications for hepatitis C in Victoria and 1,907 cases of hepatitis B. Nationally 10,114 hepatitis C and 6,702 hepatitis B cases were

total of 1,253 Australian wide in the same year. This means there are

Research indicates that chronic hepatitis C affects people’s quality

approximately ten times the number of new cases of people with viral hepatitis as there are with HIV.

of life, but such reports are scarce about hepatitis B. This Australian

Of great concern was the data showing an increase in liver disease

received information and care were related to health-related quality

study explored whether perceived stigma and satisfaction with

and a decrease in people accessing treatment. Treatment rates

of life in people with chronic hepatitis B or C.

remain low, estimated at less than 2% of the affected hepatitis C

A questionnaire was constructed comprising demographic questions


and existing scales to measure the variables. The 77 participants

The Kirby Institute Annual Surveillance Report 2013 can be found

were recruited through various online channels. The median age was


48 years, 74% had hepatitis C, 60% were female, and 73%


Hepatitis C, stigma and cure: Research article Released in October 2013, the Hepatitis C, Stigma and Cure article explores the social stigma often associated with hepatitis C along

were Caucasian. Participants with Hepatitis B reported substantially less perceived In 2009 the Australian Injecting And Illicit Drug Users League (AIVL) received funding to commission market research to determine the

stigma than those with Hepatitis C, but there was no significant difference between the two groups in health-related quality of life.

feasibility of developing a national campaign to redress the stigma

Participants with Hepatitis C reported higher satisfaction with

and discrimination faced by people who inject drugs.

received information.

The primary objectives were to learn more about the perceptions

Hepatitis B patients may require other improvements in service

of the general community–and some subsections of it, such as the

delivery such as the provision of more culturally appropriate

medical profession—towards our community.

information and education about chronic hepatitis B.

The research was used to publish a report “Why Wouldn’t I

You can request a full copy of the research from James Cook

debilitating. This is often due to the associated drug use linked to the

Discriminate Against Them All”, which was published in 2010.



One of the most important findings from the research was that

Source: Drazic, Yvonne Nelly, and Caltabiano, Marie Louise (2013)

The article notes that the psychological distress caused by living with

the focus group participants—particularly the members of the

a stigmatised disease can impact a person’s decision to get tested

general public—saw this stigma and discrimination as ‘good’

and treated.

for the community.

Chronic hepatitis B and C: exploring perceived stigma, disease information, and health-related quality of life. Nursing and Health Sciences, 15 (2). pp. 172-178.

with the consequences of living with a chronic infection and the new drugs available for treatment. The article was published in the World J Gastroenterol and featured in the Hepatitis C News Drugs blog. As many people experience, being diagnosed with hepatitis C is overwhelming and the negative stigma associated with the disease is


Hepatitis B Mapping Project – Report Released On 14-15 of November 2013 at the Hepatitis Australia Health Promotions Conference, Dr. Jennifer MacLachlan from VIDL officially launched the Hepatitis B Mapping Project Report. The report features estimates of chronic hepatitis B prevalence and cultural and linguistic diversity by Medicare Local. The report reveals that 15 of Australia’s 61 Medicare Locals are home to more than half of the all the people living with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) nationwide and five inner city Medicare Locals alone are estimated to be home to one quarter of all Australian’s living with CHB. Around 218,000 people were estimated to be living with CHB in Australia in 2011, approximately 1.0% of the population. In Australia, people born overseas (particularly from Asia, the Pacific and Africa) and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are disproportionately affected by CHB. Due to these epidemiological determinants, CHB is not evenly distributed geographically in Australia, with wide variation by local government area. The Hepatitis B Mapping Project is a joint initiative of ASHM and VIDRL, funded by the Australian Department of Health. The project will produce a comprehensive understanding of chronic hepatitis B in Australia using data that will help to inform awareness and intervention campaigns to suit the particular local needs of people living with CHB and those providing services to them. The report can be downloaded from:


In the news

Outstanding Volunteer Award – Graeme Ashton At the Health Promotion Conference in Sydney held recently by Hepatitis Australia, the award for most outstanding volunteer contribution was awarded to Hepatitis Victoria’s volunteer Graeme Ashton. Graeme has been a support group member and also a regular volunteer at Hepatitis Victoria for quite some time - be it filling or ordering resources; putting together storage cabinets or working on the database.

Catina Eyres, Hepatitis Victoria Board Member, accepting award.

Hepatitis Victoria News HEPATITIS VICTORIA AWARDS Over the past few months Hepatitis Victoria has been associated with a further two awards, in addition to the Creative Partnership Award received for the Body Armour Play in September 2013.

Graeme is also involved in our events and recently has become a trained Public Speaker and Hep Connect volunteer, where he answers InfoLine calls to provide advice and support for people thinking about or going through treatment. During these calls Graeme provides comfort and reassurance, along with his own real life experience.

Lou Reed death

Moving in

Call for more awareness

New staff for Hepatitis Victoria


n October 2013, the death of Lou Reed (front man for the Velvet Underground and rock ‘n’ roll icon) from liver cancer made headlines

around the world.In a moving tribute featured in the November edition of Rolling Stone magazine, his partner Laurie Anderson shared their story and the challenges of living with hepatitis C. The article and the need to raise more awareness were further explored by Professor Gregory Dore, which is summarised below. “He was sick for the last couple of years, first from treatments of interferon, a vile but sometimes effective series of injections that treats hepatitis C and comes with lots of nasty side effects. Last spring, at the last minute, he received a liver transplant, which seemed to work perfectly, and he almost instantly regained his health and energy. Then that, too, began to fail, and there was no way out.” Laurie Anderson, writing about Lou Reed in Rolling Stone Ms Anderson, partner of Lou Reed,

Graeme’s tireless commitment to Hepatitis Victoria is extremely

revealed that one of the greatest

valued and we congratulate him on his award.

challenges faced by people living with hepatitis C, their partners and

Australian Tattoo and Body Art Expo

Country Awareness Network’s (CAN) Community Sector Partner Award

families, is discussing the illness

Over three exciting days, Hepatitis


Victoria were thrilled to be invited

Professor Gore went onto write

to host a stall at this year’s Australian Tattoo and

away from his own personal history

be awarded the Country Awareness Network’s (CAN) Community

Body Art Expo held at the

and associated drug use, for most

Sector Partner Award.

Convention Centre.

people with hepatitis C there is no

The Community Partnership Awards acknowledges organisations,

The Expo is the largest of its kind

fame or fortune to dilute fears of

in the southern hemisphere and

being harshly judged.

informing, educating, supporting and empowering rural and regional communities. Hepatitis Victoria was presented with the Community Sector Partner Award for our ongoing commitment to Victoria’s rural communities. In particular, our work supporting and contributing to CAN’s health promotion efforts and awareness raising of viral hepatitis. Hepatitis Victoria has worked to establish support groups locally and was a key partner in the World Hepatitis Day education and community forum in Bendigo. CAN recognised our commitment and support for the health and wellbeing of regional Victorian communities. It was noted that community service is never about a single organisation and our efforts to partner with local services, organisations, and community groups was commended. Hepatitis Victoria fully supports this approach to partnerships and we look forward to continuing to work with out partners in the regions over the coming years. For more information about the award visit:


represents the culture of body ink. With an estimated 8,000+ visitors the expo showcased and promoted the incredible skills of the best tattoo artists Australia and the rest of the world have to offer.

population levels”.

Hepatitis Victoria’s presence. We were also able to promote our upcoming Body Art and Tattoo Mobile Phone Application, funded by the Telematics Trust and sponsored by the Australian Tattoo Academy. Tattooing is a culture that has been around for centuries and is now a significant part of mainstream society. However, many young people don’t know the risks of backyard or unlicensed tattooing. The app, called ‘Ink-In’, has been developed to capture the artistic spirit of young people while educating them about hepatitis. Work is continuing with a view to launch the app in early 2014. You can register to find out when it is released at

Cancer Council of Victoria, working in a variety of roles, including on the Telephone Information Line and working on smoking cessation programs in prisons. Prior to this Judi has worked as a social worker in health, community and disability sectors in Victoria, NSW and the United Kingdom.

discrimination. This discrimination is a major barrier to advancing the public health response to hepatitis C at both the individual and

and owners of tattoo studios, who expressed their appreciation for

year. Judi joins Hepatitis Victoria after more than nine years at the

injecting drug use, often due to their previous experiences of

Hepatitis Victoria were able to be present over the three days, questions from the general public, as well as speaking to artists

Isabella Natale, whilst she is on parental leave from the end of this

“Many people with hepatitis C are reluctant to acknowledge past

Thanks to the generosity of the event organisers, Tora Media, promoting safe body art and tattoo practices. We answered many

Judi Brewster has accepted the Health Promotion position to cover

that that although Reed did not shy

On Sunday 29th September 2013, Hepatitis Victoria was thrilled to

businesses and individuals that contribute to CAN’s work of

Judi Brewster

With newer and faster treatments on the horizon uptake in treatment rates should increase from the current 2%. However, Professor Gore writes that to enable people living with hepatitis C to benefit from clinical advances, treatment must not only be accessible but we must also challenge the stigma and discrimination and raise awareness to

Jane Little

support people with hepatitis C to seek treatment.

Jane Little has joined the Hepatitis Victoria Team as the new

“The Perfect Day that we are striving for in hepatitis C would be one

Champions Project Office. Jane has previously worked at

in which the 230,000 people living with chronic hepatitis C in Australia

Tourism Victoria in a variety of roles including marketing and

have the opportunity to fully benefit from approaching advances in

event coordination. More recently she worked at Centrelink

treatment and care.”

working in customer relations. Jane has been a member of the

Source: We Need To Talk About Hepatitis C, The Drum, Professor Gregory Gore, 2013 Full article available from:

Hepatitis Victoria support group for a number of years and also a key member of the ‘Happy Livers’ band. Her role here is to develop the ‘Hepatitis Champions’ project, recruiting and training community advocates.


Hep Heroes Anti-discrimination campaign launched!


n Saturday 23rd November at Federation Square, Parliamentary Secretary for Health, Georgie Crozier, was joined by leading hepatitis advocates to launch an antidiscrimination campaign called “Hep Heroes”. Representing the Minister for Health David Davis, Ms Crozier launched the online campaign and invited the public to make the pledge: “hepatitis doesn’t discriminate and neither do I”. Health Minister and a ‘Hep Hero’ David Davis sent the message that many people with hepatitis experience discrimination after disclosing their status to others. “Disclosure may have an impact on personal and working relationships and can prevent people from seeking the help and support they need,” Mr Davis said. The Minister and his Parliamentary Secretary encouraged everyone to sign the pledge and get the message out. “Becoming a Hep Hero is a simple but powerful action that will show those most affected they are supported,” Mr Davis said. Joining Ms Crozier were Hepatitis Victoria’s first 21 Hep Heroes, including Professor Rob Moodie, Dr Sally Cockburn (Dr Feelgood), leading researcher Dr Benjamin Cowie and football identity Jeff “Joffa” Corfe.

About the Hep Heroes “Hepatitis doesn’t discriminate and neither do I”

The stigma associated with hepatitis is one of the biggest barriers people face when seeking information and care. We all need to speak out and smash stigma in order to change the way hepatitis is perceived and treated. Dr Sally Feelgood

want everyone in our community to show “ Icourage to speak out against the devastating

effects that silence, stigma and discrimination can have on communities who are impacted by illness. Through public awareness we can make a real difference and influence long term change. Professor of Global Health, Rob Moodie

“Many of my friends and family have been affected by hepatitis and the discrimination that comes with it. I am a Hep Hero because I want to stand up and fight for all people with hepatitis and I want others to do the same. Football identify Joffa Corfe

a Hep Hero because I want to get “ Itheammessage out to Aboriginal communities that what we do now, can come back later. ” Aboriginal Health Worker, Victorian

Aboriginal Health Service, Kim Dick

political change and defending the “Byrightsseeking to health and wellbeing of people living


with viral hepatitis we can all make a difference. Join the heroes, there is so much we can do together to make a real difference to Australia’s response to viral hepatitis and liver cancer. Leading Hepatitis B researcher, Dr Benjamin Cowie

Hep Heroes is a simple pledge that we are asking everyone to make in order to raise awareness and stop discrimination. It is part of Hepatitis Victoria’s 21st birthday celebration, which aims to show the people behind the virus in order to provide a positive lived experience and reduce stigma. We have chosen our first 21 Heroes who we believe have made a significant contribution to increasing community knowledge and understanding of viral hepatitis (B and C). Our first heroes include medical experts, community advocates, people with lived experience and professionals in the field. They come from a range of backgrounds including CALD communities, people who inject drugs, researchers, musicians and politics. They all have one thing in common - they have spoken out against discrimination! We would now like you to join them and become a hero too!

Becoming a Hero is Easy: 1. Visit www.hepheroes and make the pledge 2. Get the message out by using the Facebook ‘like’ and Tweet buttons on the website 3. Be inspired by our Hep Hero story and submit your story Visit: and become a hero today!

Hepatitis Victoria would like to thank Federation Square for their generosity in sponsoring the Hep Heroes event.



a Hep Hero because I bit

Personal stories

Personal stories

Meet our Hep Hero – Jen Anderson

Meet our Hep Hero – Nafisa Yusuf

When I first discovered that I had hepatitis

the bullet and gave treat-

C I ignored it for many years. I didn’t feel

ment a go. It took a lot of guts, but I’m now

unwell, and anyway, I was scared about

cured of hepatitis C. So I want to help others

treatment. But I had regular blood tests for

who are in the same position that I was.”

liver check ups.

Jen has a musical background as both a

are a good place to get info and to find others who are in the same boat as you. Also, it’s important for people to talk about


a Hep Hero because

was confronting and for the first year I didn’t

daughter who was vaccinated against

I want people to be

really understand what it was. Looking back

hepatitis B and she is perfectly healthy.

empowered with more knowledge”

both hepatitis B and C, so that everyone can

I have been living with chronic hepatitis B

learn about it. Many people from all walks of

for years now and I am actively involved in

Then in 2011 my liver results started

life are affected by it. The more we can bring

the community advocating for people with

violinist and composer. She has performed

skyrocketing! I had to face the fact that if I

the subject out into the open, the less fear

hepatitis B and raising awareness.

with many Australian and international

didn’t do something soon, I might get liver

the general public will have about it.

artists such as Moby, Michelle Shocked, The

cancer and die. I didn’t want that!

Black Sorrows, Weddings Parties Anything, The Waifs and Archie Roach. She has produced and/or engineered albums with the likes of Ruby Hunter, Tim Rogers, and The Waifs, and performed on many others for artists such as Dave Graney, Nick Cave and

I started working with Hepatitis Victoria

Once they see that we are normal people

this year as a public speaker. I am

So I found out everything I could about

just like everyone else, it will make our lives

passionate about clearing up any

treatment, and I went along to the Hepatitis

easier, and we don’t need to be so scared of

misunderstandings or misconceptions

Victoria support group and also did the 6

going ahead with treatment, or getting help

about hepatitis B and letting people

week health management course that they

from family, friends, and work mates.

know that you can still have a normal

run – it was really helpful.

Jen Anderson Musician, Hepatitis Community Advocate

and healthy lifestyle. In addition to public speaking I am also

Midnight Oil. Jen also has a keen interest in

In 2012 I finally bit the bullet and underwent

health issues, having studied nursing and

treatment, which included taking 2 new trial

involved in young peoples projects and I

completed a Masters in Public Health.

drugs along with the ‘standard’ drugs. It

attend the support groups. I discovered I

She has just retired from the Board of

worked for me, and wasn’t half as scary as

had hepatitis B in 2007 when I started to feel

Hepatitis Australia.

I thought it would be. One year on, and

really sick, I had migraines and I just had no

I feel fantastic!

energy whatsoever. For a couple of months

I believe that music is the most powerful medium and have a long-term plan to mix

Now I want to help others who are in a

music and health. As a Melburnian I am

similar position to what I was. I want to

proud to support Hepatitis Victoria and

encourage those who are worried about their

share my Hep Hero story.

liver health to face their fear of treatment and look into giving it a go before it’s too late. The great thing is that drug treatments keep getting better than what they used to be, with higher cure rates and lower treatment times – hopefully soon there’ll be hardly any side effects at all. One of the main things is to set yourself up with some support to help you get through the treatment. If you’ve got an understanding partner, other family member, or friend, that’s great, but if

Jen’s message to others:

“You too can be a Hep Hero… if you have hepatitis, find that badge of courage that’s lurking inside, look into treatment options, and you too can look forward to a healthier life!”

I thought it was just stress due to my VCE but then I went to the doctor and that’s how I found out I had chronic hepatitis B. I was born in Somalia and came to live in Australia when I was twelve years old. I believe I contracted the infection from my mother during birth. When I was diagnosed, everyone in my family was tested and both my mother and brother were found to have previously had hepatitis B.

now, I think I was in denial and just wanted to treat it as soon as possible. However, I now know it’s a long-term condition and over time I have come to accept it. I simply take my medication – one tablet at night –

However, some others are not as fortunate. Hepatitis affects over 400, 0000 Australians yet very few people know about it. Therefore it is imperative to raise our voices together.

and my life hasn’t been restricted. In fact,

Nafisa Yussf

it’s changed my life for the better, because

Public Speaker, Community Advocate

now I am aware of my condition and am empowered with more knowledge. My family also struggled with the diagnosis, mainly due to the confusion from language barriers. In my language we only have one name for the three different hepatitis viruses – A, B and C – and I had to explain that to my mum. People in my culture don’t think hepatitis B is that serious because they think all strains of the virus are simply hepatitis A. This is why I want to help communities understand and have the right information.

Nafisa’s message to others:

“Come and join us! Be a Hep Hero and let’s stand together!”

I am grateful doctors diagnosed the disease before it progressed any further, and I am forever in their debt. I am glad that I caught it in time and could do something about it. Imagine if I found out when it was too late. That would be horrific. I am very lucky that there are treatments available. Thanks to regular appointments with my doctor my hepatitis B is carefully managed at every stage. I have a

The original diagnosis

you haven’t, places like Hepatitis Victoria are really helpful and



Health literacy in a culturally and linguistically diverse society: Shinen Wong, Health Promotions Officer explores the sector


come from a mixed cultural background.

In many ways, I am privileged to be fluent

I am ethnically Hakka, Hokkien and

in my spoken and written English skills,

Cantonese, all linguistically diverse groups

and in my professional involvement in

from various parts of China, and also

health promotion. Even with all these, as

Peranakan, a cultural category used to

someone from a migrant background who

describe Chinese-descended people who

has lived here for just over five years, I am

have long lived in Malaysia and have a

still learning, every day, about what my rights are in terms of access to healthcare and the possibilities there are in enabling the health and wellbeing of myself and of the communities I am a part of.

unique hybridized cultural identity (most recognisably in our art, architecture and delicious food). More personally, I was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, grew up in Singapore, and went to university in rural New Hampshire, USA, before moving to Australia as a young adult to kick-start my career in health promotion and community development.

These are just some of the factors that influence health promotion. It is important to step back from our roles as educators and

see health literacy as a collaborative responsibility of all of us.

The World Health Organisation defines health literacy as “the cognitive and social

As a primarily English-language health

skills which determine the motivation and

promoter, I can improve my own health

ability of individuals to gain access to,

Since coming to Australia, I have been

understand and use information in ways

struck by the sophistication of the work

which promote and maintain good health.

around public health that has been done

Health Literacy means more than being able

literacy in learning to collaboratively communicate and to convey complex health information in a range of more accessible ways for a broader audience.

Health Literacy means more than being able to read pamphlets and successfully make appointments. By improving people’s access to health information and their capacity to use it effectively, health literacy is critical to empowerment.

Accessibility is not necessarily a “dumbing down” of information, but more enabling mutual understanding, such

health literacy

that the dynamics of making information more accessible is understood to be an integrative and transformative process for all people involved. Rather than claiming to do something “on behalf of” culturally and linguistically diverse or “CALD” communities, health

here, particularly when compared to in the

to read pamphlets and successfully make

USA (who are unfortunately still grappling

appointments. By improving people’s access

There is no single health message that would do the trick. All messages will be

with issues of basic ethical concern, such

to health information and their capacity to

received differently by different people.

as availability of access to primary health

use it effectively, health literacy is critical

• Experiences of race and racism in

care for all people). As a new Australian

to empowerment.”

There are many factors to consider when striving to improve health literacy of diverse individuals and communities. Some of these factors include:

citizen, I am grateful for the work that other Australians have done historically to set up a working healthcare system, which provide and make accessible subsidised primary health care services for all citizens as an issue of basic human rights.

Including Aboriginal Australians (who are themselves extremely culturally and linguistically diverse), the cultural and linguistic landscape of Australia is becoming more diverse. Ethnic, cultural and

more ongoing work there has to be done on

linguistic diversity is a given fact of life, certainly in major metropolitan areas like greater Melbourne. This diversity

the ground in order to ensure full equity when

is a benefit to broader Australian society,

it comes to access to health, and parity of

economy and identity. At the same time it

health and wellness across all groups

presents a particular challenge in terms of

of people.

health promotion.

At the same time, I am struck by how much


• Current English language proficiency. • Familiarity with the Australian

health system.

• How entrenched a particular community

already is in Australia (for example, there would be a more well-assimilated ethnically Chinese community in Melbourne compared to, say, a Sudanese community).

• Prior or current experience of political

trauma (for example, in the case of refugees and asylum seekers).

accessing services.

• Diverse interpretations of health and

wellness (Traditional Chinese Medicine,

for example, is predicated upon a different

philosophy of the body, health, and

“healing” than Western medicine).

Generational differences within families

and communities.

In addition to all these cultural factors, there are also other larger political factors at play, which can determine the capacity for communities, health promoters and healthcare service providers to work together

to improve aggregate health literacy.

promotion workers can think of themselves

These factors may include:

as being a part of the communities whom

• The residency or visa status which can

we wish to serve, and in a way belonging

impact on a person’s entitlements to healthcare or Medicare (this is necessarily linked to existing immigration policy at a Federal level).

• The amount of resources that are

currently devoted to supplementing work with culturally and linguistically diverse communities on local, State/Territory and Federal levels.

• The comparative wealth of different

to and as members of a culturally and linguistically diverse society, regardless of our own cultural heritage or linguistic ability. It is this framework that I wish to experiment with as we continue our commitments to the improvement of health literacy of all of our diverse communities, in the service of better public health outcomes for everyone.

Shinen Wong


Health Promotion Officer

• The criminalisation of already stigmatised

Hepatitis Victoria

activities (for example, around illicit

injecting drug use).


Discrimination and health care An interview with an Integrated Hepatitis C Nurse Consultant.

Leah Higgins, Integrated Hepatitis C

The other thing I see is discrimination that

who have hepatitis C. Going along to a

I’d like to see health workers educate

Nurse Consultant, is interviewed by Marg

could have been avoided with accurate

support group can have enormous benefits

themselves about the condition and get

Sutherland, Health Promotions

information, for example clients being told

as it’s a safe place to talk about living with

past judging people for having it. We also

Officer, Hepatitis Victoria

that they had hepatitis C and believing that

hepatitis C, to get tips, emotional support,

have a responsibility to talk about it and


for many years, only to find out that they had

and to not feel judged.

bring it “out of the closet”, and to advocate

work as an Integrated Hepatitis C Nurse Consultant, which means I act as a link

between the hospital and community setting. I’m based at the Royal Melbourne Hospital and my role is primarily in an outreach capacity, where I see people living with viral hepatitis at primary health services in

...A client found out he had hepatitis C because it was written on a sign placed above his hospital bed, not because anyone had discussed it with him. It took him another six years to pluck up the courage and seek information and support about his hepatitis C.

Melbourne. We also provide some telehealth clinics to people who live in regional Victoria. In my role I come across many clients who have suffered from discrimination. They often fear being judged or being put into a box

The same applies to other forms of support.

test, a PCR (polymerase chain reaction test),

Just having one person in your life you can

hadn’t been done or even discussed until the

trust and talk to can help lift that burden.

damage was done.

Online or telephone support can be just

based on their hepatitis C status, rather than

I’ve also seen examples of people being

being seen for who they are as an individual.

discriminated against by employers. For

Discrimination is experienced differently by different people. There are clients I see who have never disclosed to anyone about their hepatitis status, and I’m the first person

example, when people explain why they may need to take time off for treatment and

regular monitoring of their liver health

in their lives because they really don’t care

with the added burden of not feeling they

about other people’s reaction and see it as

have the ability to pursue their rights if their

“their problem”. But this is not common.

employment is suddenly terminated.

Some people on treatment have internalised

I’ve observed discrimination to have a

of treatment are some sort of punishment

huge impact. It affects people mentally,

for having acquired hepatitis C. Family

emotionally, and often physically due to the

members may have given out this message,

stress it causes. They often lose confidence,

or they have internalised the discrimination

and with that goes their ability to access

that’s out there. This is especially true for

services including adequate support and

people who have injected, or who are still

health care.

using as they worry they’ll be given a lecture

judgement. I remember a client who found out he had hepatitis C because it was written on a sign placed above his hospital bed, not because anyone had sat him down and discussed it with him. It took this young man

entering into new relationships through fear

territory. Creative, mass advertising or awareness campaigns are needed to lift the lid on this hidden issue.

with hepatitis C you can make a huge

experience this employment discrimination

feel vulnerable and are in need of care, not

depressing images that often go with the

about accessing services.

I have observed is people not accessing

relationships. Not kissing grandchildren, not

people can warm to rather than the dark,

are. If you’re a parent of someone

on shifts.

be very overwhelming for people who already

see more light, refreshing images, that

affects people regardless of who they

One of the biggest impacts of stigma that

For other people it affects their interpersonal

hepatitis awareness. I would like to

too for someone who isn’t feeling confident

monitoring, they are then no longer rostered

treatment of people with hepatitis. This can

There’s a lot of negative imagery around

supported referrals can help bridge the gaps

hand there are people who tell everyone

sometimes be the worst culprits in their

way we talk about it is important too.

Discrimination doesn’t discriminate! It

People from CALD backgrounds often

Unfortunately Health Care Workers can

it alone, or unable to do so. I think the

as helpful. Workers who are able to offer

they’ve really talked to about it. On the other

The silence that tends to result from discrimination, both perceived and real, leads to a lot of people with hepatitis C not being heard. They don’t have a voice because they don’t want to come out and identify themselves.


actually cleared the virus. The right follow up

on behalf of people who are tired of going

because they just don’t want to deal with the

difference in how you respond to your son or daughter’s situation. The response from parents is often extremely important in how people cope and seek support.

discrimination they believe will go along with

For people with hepatitis C I would say

accessing services.

that knowledge is power. The more they

negative messages such as the rigours

can access information relevant to their situation the better equipped they’ll be. This includes the issue of disclosure – making sure you have brochures or other information at the ready if you’re telling someone about your hepatitis C. Take advantage of the support that’s out there – people are often pleasantly surprised by what’s available by phone and online etc.

about their using, past or present. Of course

Marg Sutherland

there are many treatment providers who don’t

Health Promotion Officer

judge, but the perception is still there.

Hepatitis Victoria

of rejection or worrying about transmission,

The silence that tends to result from

even though this shouldn’t be of concern.

discrimination, both perceived and real,

The reactions they’ve had from others

leads to a lot of people with hepatitis C

can make them feel like they should

not being heard. They don’t have a voice

isolate themselves.

because they don’t want to come out and identify themselves.

another six years to pluck up the courage

Conversely people are able to talk

and seek information and support about his

about having hepatitis C in a supportive

As health care workers we need to see

hepatitis C.

environment, especially with other people

hepatitis C as just another health condition.


From the Inside

From inside

The right to health care on the inside

The right to health care on the inside.

test (PCR), which establishes whether they have a current infection, prisoners cannot make informed choices about their treatment options. A prisoner might experience considerable distress based on the results of their antibody test for the entire length of their sentence until they have access to a PCR test.


eople belonging to marginalised social groups traditionally experience communicable diseases more often. Similarly, many of the most disadvantaged groups are overrepresented within custodial settings. A 2003 Department of Justice evaluation identified Victorian prisoners were “…. at the very high-risk end of the Victorian health spectrum”.1

Worldwide rates of blood borne viruses are considerably higher in people in custody than the general population. In Australia, it is believed one in three men in custody and two in three women have hepatitis C infections. Infections in the general population are estimated to be one in every 100 people. 2 Prisoners have the right to access and receive health care without discrimination because of their legal status. This right is outlined in the Basic Principles for the Treatment of Prisoners.3 Niveau et al argue care received by prisoners is often different to that available to the general population out of necessity.4 People in custodial settings have increased and different needs generally. They further argue providing health care which is the equivalent to the community should be the minimum aim, and that when health care services within custodial settings are different from those in the community, it should be because they exceed community standards.4

PREVENTION The prevention and control of hepatitis C cannot be achieved with a single activity. Transmission is preventable and infections are manageable with a combination of activities. A comprehensive approach involving education, surveillance,


An antibody test will limit the ability of staff to assist prisoners to prepare themselves to access specialist services once they are released. As a result the ability of health care staff to provide health care to prisoners is not the equivalent of their counterparts resources essential to preventing transmission, diagnosis and treatment is necessary to prevent and control infections. Each component is essential and the absence of any could undermine the impact of other components.

needs for preventative resources. The lack of needle and syringe programs in custodial facilities could therefore be considered as an example of discrimination experienced by prisoners because of their legal status.

An essential component of preventing

a range of education programs in prisons

transmission of blood borne viruses is

aimed at reducing risk and preventing harm,

access to needle and syringe programs.

however this can only have a limited effect.

An investment of $141 million on Australian needle and syringe programs is estimated to have prevented 21,000 hepatitis C infections and 25,000 HIV infections over a ten year period. The resulting programs also saved $2.4 billion dollars. 6 These figures illustrate how programs simultaneously benefit individuals, the general community and the health services of the future. Despite this there are currently no needle and syringe programs in Victorian

For example, Hepatitis Victoria undertakes

Education needs to be accompanied by concrete programs that acknowledge the reality of people’s current addiction and works with them to reduce the harm associated, while encouraging alternate options.

TREATMENT Essential resources to diagnose, observe and manage an infection include the ability to access pathology services, specialist assessment and investigations pertinent to determining whether commencing treatment is appropriate.

and syringe programs detracts from the

In some custodial settings, people can only be tested to establish whether they have antibodies to the virus. While a negative antibody test may be useful, a positive test has limited value.

prevention efforts that do currently occur

A positive test may reflect someone currently

prisons. Their absence in custodial settings undermines efforts undertaken in the community by individuals to protect themselves. Further, a lack of needle

in prisons.

has an infection. It could also reflect that

The high rates of viral hepatitis and other

someone has previously had the infection but

blood borne viruses experienced by people in

does not anymore. Until all prisoners have

custody means they have drastically higher

access to a polymerase chain reaction

in other settings. Treatment of chronic infections is essential to reducing transmission of the virus. However, despite high rates of infections in people in prison, throughout the world treatment programs are not common in custodial settings.7

access to specialist services. A person’s sentence time can also impact on their ability to initiate and complete treatment. They could also be transferred between custodial facilities during treatment. However, prison could be viewed as the perfect opportunity to provide treatment. When in custody peoples lives are often relatively stable, they can be actively monitored, and it can be combined with a range of other support programs to prepare them for a more healthy lifestyle when released. This is particularly the case with the increasing number of treatment options for hepatitis, which take fewer months and so can be completed while in prison leaving the person healthly on returning to the community. If treatment was available and standardized throughout all custodial settings in Victoria, movement of prisoners between and out of facilities could be less disruptive to a person’s ability to complete treatment than

The lack of needle and syringe programs in custodial facilities could therefore be considered as an example of discrimination experienced by prisoners because of their legal status In the 2011 report, Investigation into prisoner access to health care, the Ombudsman identified access to treatment for hepatitis C as “a matter of some priority”.8 At the time people in only three out of Victorians 14 prisons were able to access treatment while they were in custody. The Ombudsman described this as an “insufficient” level of prisoner access to treatment.

when only a select number of facilities are able to offer treatment.

In practice people in custodial settings are faced with numerous challenges when wanting to undertake often live saving treatment. A person who is preparing to undertake treatment needs to access to specialist staff, medications and other supportive resources. There are many logistical difficulties associated with prisoner

Federal and state laws in Australia make it unlawful to discriminate against someone on the basis of their health and illness. There are many activities currently occurring within Victorian prisons important to reducing blood borne virus transmission and treating chronic hepatitis C infections. However prisoners are severely constrained in their access to

There are many benefits for the individual unique to commencing treatment in the custodial setting. Cirrhosis, liver failure and hepatocellular carcinoma may be avoided if treatment can be commenced before these diseases develop. Further infections will be prevented when an individual is treated.


prevention resources, specialist services and treatment. The stigma often associated with hepatitis C and the potential consequences of the resulting discrimination could be far more extreme within a custodial setting. Educational programs aimed at all prisoners can enhance the populations understanding of their own risk to blood borne diseases. Until every person in custody has access to the same prevention and treatment services as people in the community, it cannot be said that prisoners do not have access to health care that is the equivalent to people in the community. As Post et al state “the prison environment is intended for deprivation of liberty not health care.” The distinction between these concepts should be maintained if the principal of equivalence of health care services is to be respected.

Melissa Wright Health Promotion Officer, Hepatitis Victoria

Annotation: 1. Deloitte Consulting. Victorian Prisoner Health Survey. Department of Justice, Government of Victoria. February 2003. 2. Hepatitis Australia. Consensus statement: addressing Hepatitis C in Australian Custodial settings. June 2011. 3. UN General Assembly, Basic Principles for the Treatment of Prisoners: resolution/adopted by the General Assembly, 28 March 1991, A/RES/45/111, 4. Niveau, G. Relevance and limits of the principle of “equivalence of care” in prison medicine. J Med Ethics. 2007 October; 33(10): 610–613. doi: 10.1136/jme.2006.018077 5. AIHW. The health of Australia’s prisoners. 2012. 6. 2013. Needle & Syringe Program: Alcohol & other drugs services in Victoria - Department of Health, Victoria, Australia. [online] Available at: http://www. 7. Post, J., Arain, A. and Llyod, A. 2013. Enhancing assessment and treatment of hepatitis C in the custodial setting. CID, 2013:57 Suppl 2. 8. Victorian Ombudsman. 2011. Investigation into prisoner access to health care.


Hepatitis C – A new report Understanding care and stigma from a social perspective

Hep C: Going Viral Would you like to learn what you can do to stay healthy and get more out of life? Would you like to meet other people with hepatitis C?

A research paper released by Oxford

Hepatitis C remains a clinical and public

One of the studies cited is a mood and

University Press on behalf of the Infectious

health challenge. Engaging people with

adjustment study conducted among 87

Diseases Society of America.

hepatitis C in care and treatment has been

patients awaiting hepatitis C treatment in


identified as key to reducing the growing

Ireland. The study examined various physical

disease burden and social costs. However,

and mental health measures. The impact of

treatment uptake rates remain low despite

stigma was associated with a wide spectrum of

advances in treatment. One defining

health outcomes, from poor adaption to illness

characteristic of the experience

to psychiatric disorders. A similar study

new report entitled Under-standing Barriers to Hepatitis C Virus Care and Stigmatization From a Social Perspective was released in October 2013 exploring the relationship bet-ween stigma, adverse health outcomes and access to the care as a result. The paper notes that for people living with hepatitis C, stigma is a defining feature given the “socially demonised practice of injection drug use”. However, there is little

undertaken in the United States

Stigma has a direct detrimental influence on mental and physical care. The association between illness-related stigma and psychological health impacts on families and carers and the uptake of treatment and care.

also revealed that more than 50% of clients with hepatitis attending hospital based liver clinics reported stigma. Connections were found between stigma and mental health symptoms, reduced quality of life and difficulty coping.

literature that examines stigma as a barrier to hepatitis C treatment and

of living with hepatitis – stigma – has not be

care. The paper explores the relationship

systematically explored as a barrier to care.

between the person living with hepatitis C

The report examines the elements of

and their health worker can work to improve

stigma and it’s effects.

the effects of stigma.

The discussion focuses on contemporary

The paper provides a number of stigma reduction strategies and highlights the importance of building trust and relationships in health care settings. A full copy of the supplement article can be found:

“Stigma has a direct detrimental influence on

hepatitis C healthcare models that are

mental and physical care. The association

working to acknowledge the challenge of

between illness-related stigma and psycho–

stigma and investigates the importance

logical health impacts on families and carers

of building trusting relationships between

Source: Understanding Barriers to Hepatitis C Virus Care and Stigmatization from a Social Perspective. Carla Treloar, Jake Rance, and

and the uptake of treatment and care”.

patients, health workers and their clinics.

Markus Backmund, Oxford University Press , 2013

Face-to-face not your style? We are currently looking for people with a current or past history of hepatitis C, who are interested in joining our online program. Hep C: Going Viral is a six week online group program about health education around hepatitis C, and learning the skills for your health and well-being goals. The online groups are made up of 5 and 10 people, and consist of a weekly 1 hour online (typed) chat session with the whole group, plus some modules you can work on in your own time, for your own learning. The commitment is around 1 -2 hours (1 hour group chat, 30 mins-1 hour module activities) per week for 6 weeks. The modules will be tailored to your health needs and interests.

Our next program will start mid February 2014.

Public Speakers Training Hepatitis Victoria invites you to register your interest in becoming a trained public speaker with the Hepatitis Victoria Public Speakers Bureau.

The Hepatitis Victoria Public Speakers Bureau is a highly dedicated and diverse group of people affected by viral hepatitis who seek to educate the wider community on the issues of living with viral hepatitis by telling their personal stories. Our speakers are the human face of viral hepatitis and help to reduce fear, myths, stigma and discrimination. Training is open to anyone who has had some sort of lived experience with viral hepatitis (B or C). This could include those who have lived with the virus, or closely affected others/supporters, for example partner, child or parent. Our next Public Speakers induction and training will be held in March 2014.

If you are interested in either of the above programs please contact Claire Ferrier, Community Participation Project Officer on (03) 9385 9106 or Please notify Claire of which program you are interested in.


HEPATITIS CHAMPIONS PROJECT! Become a Community Advocate for education and change – really make a difference and help us deliver this important project! Becoming a Community Advocate as part of the Hepatitis Champions Project is a new and innovative approach to hepatitis education. As a Hepatitis Champions Project – Community Advocate you will share your personal experience of living with, or supporting others with viral hepatitis, communicate with audiences of healthcare workers, local, state and federal government representatives, other professionals and various other targeted community groups.


You will then become an advocate for change and increase community understanding and awareness of viral hepatitis, dispel myths and reduce stigma and discrimination and really make a difference. Also as a Community Advocate, you may be invited to participate in longer education sessions, combined with other Hepatitis Victoria programs. You may be fully trained and supported by Hepatitis Victoria to be a public speaker and/or media spokesperson.

If you would like to be involved please email or call on 9385 9123 regarding the first exciting session scheduled for 11 February 2014



Liver clinics

Liver clinics and liver specialists To access public hepatitis C treatment services a referral from a GP is needed. In most cases a referral is faxed to the hepatitis treatment service. The hepatitis treatment services will generally not discuss your treatment options with you until after they have received a referral from your GP. This list of hepatitis treatment services includes clinics that are known to Hepatitis Victoria. Not all possible services are listed and there may be others in your local area.

ALBURY Albury Community Health – Hepatitis Clinic Suite 3, Albury Wodonga Specialist Centre 2 Ramsey Place, West Albury. Contact: (02) 6058 1800 Fax: (02) 6058 1801

BAIRNSDALE Bairnsdale Regional Hospital Bairnsdale Regional Health Service Specialist Consulting Rooms. Princes Hwy, Bairnsdale. Contact: (03) 5150 3478 Fax: (03) 5150 3404

BALLARAT Ballarat Base Hospital Drummond Street, Ballarat Contact: (03) 5320 4211 Fax: (03) 5320 4472

BALLARAT Ballarat Community Health 210 Stuart Street, Ballarat Contact: (03) 5338 4500 or (03) 5320 7500 Fax:(03) 5339 3044

BENDIGO Bendigo Health Cnr Arnold and Lucas Streets, Bendigo Contact: (03) 5454 8422 Fax: (03) 5454 8419

BOX HILL Box Hill Hospital 16 Arnold Street, Box Hill Contact: (03) 9895 3333 (ask for OPD) Fax: (03) 9895 4852





North Richmond Community Health

Harm Reduction Victoria (HRV)

Southern Health Monash Medical Centre 246 Clayton Road, Clayton Contact: (03) 9594 6035 Fax: (03) 9594 6925

Maroondah Hospital (Eastern Health)

Western Region Alcohol and Drug Centre

Dr John Furler

128 Peel Street, North Melbourne

Out-Patients, Ground Floor, Davey Drive,

(limited hepatitis treatment services)

Weekly visiting Hep C Nurse

Contact: (03) 9329 1500

Ringwood East

172 Merri Street, Warrnambool

23 Lennox Street, Richmond


Contact: (03) 9895 3333

Contact: 1300 009 723

Contact: (03) 9418 9800


Fax: (03) 9871 3202

Southern Health Monash Medical Centre Contact: (03) 9594 3177 Fax: (03) 9594 6245

Primary healthcare and needle



North Yarra Community Health Dr Ohnmar John

syringe program

Weekly visiting Hep C Nurse

Hepatitis C information, support and treatment


75 Brunswick St, Fitzroy

Contact: (03) 9276 2223

Contact: (03) 9411 3555 or (03) 9288 2259

4-12 Buckley Street, Footscray

Maroondah Hospital Davey Drive, East Ringwood Contact: (03) 9095 2434 Fax: (03) 9899 9137

Fax: (03) 9276 2194

Contact: (02) 6056 3366


Nunawading Clinic

EPPING Northern Hospital 185 Cooper Street, Contact: (03) 8405 8000 Fax: (03) 8405 8761

FITZROY St Vincents Hospital 35 Victoria Parade, Fitzroy Contact; (03) 9288 3771 Fax: (03) 9288 3489


Bayside Liver Clinic (Alfred Hospital) 999 Nepean Highway, Moorabbin


Nordsvan Drive, Wodonga. Vic.

Wodonga Regional Hospital

176 Springvale Road, Nunawading

Dr. David Ross GP s100 prescriber for

Primary healthcare and needle

HCV and Opiate Replacememnt Program

syringe program

Contact: (03) 9871 3333

Hepatitis C information, support


Community-based hepatitis C treatment services

Contact: (03) 9342 7212

Community based treatment clinics have

2A Moore Street, Coburg

Fax: (03) 9342 7277

been developed to enable more people to

Contact: (03) 9386 0900

Living Room


access treatment in their local communities.

Werribee Mercy Hospital

Alfred Hospital

Barkley Street Medical Centre

Consulting Suites

syringe program

Gastroenterology Department

Dr Elizabeth Leder

300 Princess Hwy, Werribee

Monthly visiting Gastroenterologist

Contact: 9386 2259

and hep C Nurse

Fax: (03) 9216 8633

60 Barkley Street, St. Kilda

Primary health care centres (for people who use drugs)

234 Thirteenth Street, Mildura Contact: 0408 581 781

PARKVILLE Royal Melbourne Hospital Corner Royal Parade and Grattan Streets,


Alfred Hospital

Peninsula Liver Clinic 141 Cranbourne Road, Frankston Contact: (03) 9770 0139

Infectious Diseases Unit


Fax: (03) 9076 6578

Geelong Hospital Ryrie Steet, Geelong Contact: (03) 5246 5117 Fax: (03) 5221 3429


Contact: (03) 9076 2223 Fax: (03) 9276 2194

55 Commercial Road, Prahran Contact: (03) 9076 6081

Goulburn Valley Health 50 Graham Street, Shepparton Telephone: (03) 5832 3600

SPRINGVALE Springvale Community Health 55 Buckingham Street, Springvale

Vermont Street. Wodonga Contact: (02) 6051 7413

Contact: (03) 9534 0531 Cranbourne Integrated Care Centre

St. Kyrollos Family Clinic Dr Ashraf Saddik Monthly visiting Hep C Nurse

4 Johnson Street, Collingwood Contact: (03) 9468 2800

Primary healthcare and needle Hepatitis C information, support and treatment services 7–9 Hosier Lane (off Flinders Lane), Melbourne Contact: (03) 9662 4488 South East Alcohol and Drug Service (Forster Street)

140–154 Sladen Street, Cranbourne

Access Health


Contact: (03) 5990 6789

Primary healthcare and needle syringe

Level 2, 229 Thomas Street, Dandenong

program for marginalised/street based

Contact: (03) 9794 7895

injecting drug users, street sex workers and

Turning Point

people experiencing homelessness.

54–62 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy

Hepatitis C information, support and

Contact: (03) 8413 8413



31 Grey Street, St. Kilda


as part of Southern Health Services

Greater Dandenong Community Health Service Hepatitis C outreach treatment clinic 229 Thomas Street, Dandenong Contact: (03) 8792 2200

Contact: (03) 9594 3088



Contact: (03) 9362 8100

Austin Hospital 145 Studley Road, Heidelberg Contact: (03) 9496 2787

Private Consulting Suites 3 and 4

Living Room

95 Drummond Street, Carlton

Princes Highway, Traralgon West.

7 – 9 Hosier Lane, Melbourne

Contact: (03) 9650 0699

Contact: (03) 5173 8111

Contact: (03) 9945 2100


Latrobe Regional Hospital

and treatment.

Primary Needle Syringe Programs

Hepatitis C outreach treatment clinic

Health Works

Fax: (03) 9496 7232

Contact: (03) 9362 8100

Inner Space

55 Commercial Road, Prahran

Central Gippsland Health Service Guthridge Parade, Sale. Contact: (03) 5143 8600 Email:

(Dr Tim Shanahan – Gastroenterologist)

Twice per month


Western Hospital Eleanor Street, Footscray Contact: (03) 8345 6291


Murray Valley (Private) Hospital

Health Works

4 –12 Buckley Street, Footscray

Primary healthcare and needle syringe

Contact: (03) 9536 7780 ANEX (Association for Needle Exchanges)




Indigenous Health

Multilingual Hepatitis C Resources

CAN (Country Awareness Network),

Wodonga Community Health

Ngwala Willumbong Co-op Limited

This website has over 400 pages of hepatitis


Contact: Jenny Horan/Anita

93 Wellington Street, St Kilda

C and HIV information in 18 languages.

Information, education, support, referrals

Telephone: (02) 6022 8888

Indigenous drug and alcohol service

and advocacy to Victorian rural/regional

Telephone: (03) 9510 3233

Health Services Commissioner

communities regarding HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis


30th Floor, 570 Bourke Street, City

VACCHO (Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation)

Freecall: 1800 136 066 Email:

17 – 23 Sackville Street, Collingwood.

Victorian Equal Opportunity and

Telephone: (03) 9411 9411

Human Rights Commission


Information on state and federal equal


opportunity laws and programs

Victorian Aboriginal Health Service 186 Nicholson Street, Fitzroy Telephone: (03) 9419 3000

Sexual Health Melbourne Sexual Health Centre 580 Swanston Street, City Telephone: (03) 9341 6200 Free call: 1800 032 017

Level 3, 204 Lygon Street, Calrton

Telephone: (03) 9418 9929

Email: Web: Jigsaw Youth Health Service (Barwon Health Geelong) Contact: Rochelle Hamilton


Latrobe - Mobile Drug Safety Worker

Web: www.humanrightscommission

Helen Warner

Mobile: 0438 128 919

Victorian Viral Hepatitis Educator

Mildura - Sunraysia Community Health

Training for Doctors, Nurses and

Contact: Anne Watts

other health professionals

Telephone: (03) 5022 5444

Telephone 9288 3586


Support Service,

23 Lennox Street, Richmond.

Telephone: (03) 5443 8355

Telephone: 1300 094 187

Mobile 0407 865 140

transmissible infections

Transmitted Infections

Telephone 1300 891 848

Multicultural Health and  HIV, hepatitis C and sexually

C, other Blood Borne Viruses and Sexually

Yarra Valley Community Health Service Healesville Shop 2, 297 Maroondah Highway, Healesville. Once per month clinic GP referral – can be faxed to Dept of Hepatology, Eastern Health Telephone: 1300 130 381 Yarrawonga Community Health Contact: Cherie McQualter Whyte Telephone: (03) 5743 8111

What is Hep Connect Hep Connect provides an opportunity for people with hepatitis C to mutually discuss their experience with a trained peer volunteer over the telephone. All peer volunteers have experience of living with hepatitis C and have undertaken hepatitis C treatment or are living with cirrhosis. Hep Connect is a FREE and CONFIDENTIAL service and can be accessed by calling the Hepatitis Infoline

1800 703 003 (free call) Hep Connect aims to:

• Assist people living with

Meets on the third Sunday of each month between 2.00 – 4.00pm The Hepatitis Support Group meets at the offices of Hepatitis Victoria, Suite 5, 200 Sydney Road, Brunswick. The meetings are a great place to meet other people who are also living with hepatitis. The group is friendly and welcoming and comprises people from various backgrounds who come together once a month to talk about their experiences of living with hepatitis. One aspect of the group is support while another is socialising regularly with sorts of challenges as you. It’s a great way to deal with those feelings of isolation and aloneness.

Moe Community Health Centre

hepatitis C

You can call Garry on the Hepatitis Infoline

Regional services

Telephone: 1800 242 696

1800 703 003 if you want to either attend

These contacts are able to provide

Portland - Glenelg Southern Grampians

• Assist people’s decision

information about local viral hepatitis related

Drug Treatment Service

services as well as active support groups.

Contact: Bev McIlroy Telephone: (03) 5521 0350

making process around treatment

Enhance peoples capacity to cope with treatment

Ballarat Community Health

Related Health Services

Contact: Marg Stangl

Shepparton Community Health

Telephone: (03) 5338 4500

Telephone: (03) 5823 3200

13 Keith Street, Hampton East

Barwon - Surf Coast Health Service

Wangaratta - Ovens and King

living with cirrhosis

Telephone: (03) 9555 7595

Telephone: 03) 4215 7850

Community Health Centre



people who are going through the same

Go to:

Haemophilia Foundation Victoria,


Barwon Health Drug and Alcohol Services

Contact: Diane Hourigan Telephone: (03) 5723 2000

• Assist people to manage

Reduce isolation and increase overall hepatitis C support.

a meeting or would like to learn more about how the support group works.

Garry Sattell Community Support Services Coordination Hepatitis Victoria

Upcoming Support Group dates in 2014 February 16 March 16

Hepatitis Australia

Telephone: (03) 4215 8700

Web forum for professionals in the hepatitis C

Bendigo Health Care Group

Contact: Catina Eyres


Telephone: (03) 5454 6000

HIV/Hepatitis/STI Education and

services from the WRAD centre on the

June 22

Camperdown Hepatitis C Support worker

Resource Centre at the Alfred

2nd Thursday of each month.

Contact: Jo Sloetjes

July 20

Moubray Street, Prahran

Telephone: 1300 009 723

Telephone: (03) 5593 3415

Statewide resource centre on HIV/AIDS,


Hepatitis and Sexually Transmissible Infections Telephone: (03) 9076 6993 Web:

Warrnambool - Western Region Alcohol and Drug Centre (WRAD)

Dr Brough is offering limited specialist

Wimmera (East) Region

April 20 May 18

August 17

(Birchip, Wycheproof, St Arnaud)

September 21

Phil Blackwood (Naturopath/Psychologist)

October 19

Mobile telephone: 0403 625 526

November 16 December 21



Hepatitis Infoline Call the Hepatitis Infoline to talk about. Information: We can answer questions and mail information to you. Support: We can provide support for a range of issues and concerns. Referral: We can refer you to other organisations and services. The Hepatitis Infoline is a free and confidential service for all Victorians. Hours Monday to Friday 9.00am – 5.00pm

1800 703 003 Your donations make a difference!


our donations help us to provide information, services, advocacy, resources and support for people affected by viral hepatitis, health profess­ionals and members of the general

public. All donations of $2 or more are tax deductible.

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If you do not receive your receipt promptly, then please call Lisa Nulty on 03 9380 4644, or email Lisa at:



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Suite 5, 200 Sydney Road

Brunswick, Victoria. 3056

Good Liver December 2014  

Focusing on our newly launched Hep Heroes campaign and standing up to discrimination!