New hepatitis treatments Some frequently asked questions continued What does treatment with the new medications involve? The treatment regimens for the new DAA medications range between eight and 24 weeks for a complete course of treatment, depending on your genotype, treatment history, whether you have cirrhosis and the combination of medications used. Refer http://www.hepatitisaustralia.com/hcv-treatments-options Some treatments require only one to two tablets once or twice a day. For some treatment regimens, up to three medications may be required to be used together. Depending on treatment history and genotype, some people may still need to include an injection (peginterferon) as well as taking tablets. Your doctor will explain the options available to you in more detail.
HealthPathways Important new information for GPs on HCV treatment
ictorian General Practitioners now have access to updated and comprehensive information for the assessment, management and referral of patients with chronic hepatitis C.
The hepatitis C pathway has been updated on HealthPathways* Melbourne, in consultation with the Department of Health and Human Services, specialists from The Royal Melbourne Hospital, St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne, Western Health, Eastern Health, and the Burnet Institute, as well as hospital and community pharmacists. The updated information includes comprehensive drug tables, patient management and surveillance guidelines, as well as localised referral information for Liver Clinics and Units. The update is an important development given that new, highly successful treatments became available to all people with hepatitis C on 1 March.
Can you still see your specialist to access the new medications?
The listing of new treatments on the PBS represents a huge step forward
Yes, gastroenterologists, hepatologists or infectious diseases
of HCV patients in general practice. So it is crucial that general
physicians experienced in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C will
practitioners improve their knowledge and skills in the diagnosis and
continue to prescribe the new medications. These specialists will
in the battle against hepatitis C, and a major change to the management
management of HCV especially the use of the new DAAs.
also provide advice to GPs prescribing the new medications, so you
Further updates to the HealthPathways page will occur regularly as
may consider seeing your GP if this is more convenient for you.
new information becomes available.
How much do the medications cost you? From 1 March 2016, you will only be charged the usual co-payment price you pay for the dispensing fee of each prescription. As these medications are PBS ‘authority required’ the doctor can only prescribe one medicine on each prescription. This means you may be required to pay the dispensing fee for each medicine. From 1 January 2016, the dispensing fee for each prescription is $38.30 for general patients and $6.20 for concessional patients. This fee is reviewed each year.
What if treatment is not effective for you? For most people it is highly likely the new DAA medicine will be effective. If the new treatment does not work for you, your doctor will refer you to a specialist for further assessment prior to commencing any further treatment.
How to access HealthPathways Melbourne If you are a health professional in Melbourne’s north western or eastern region, you can access the site by requesting the username and password from the HealthPathways Melbourne team, email: firstname.lastname@example.org HealthPathways Melbourne Collaboration For health professionals outside of these areas you can contact
Where can you get further information?
your local PHN: http://vphna.org.au/victorian-phns/
You can talk to your GP, specialist, clinic nurse or call the Hepatitis Victoria Infoline on 1800 703 003.
*HealthPathways provides a manual for general practice teams to assess, manage and refer their patients to secondary, tertiary, and community services. The pathways have been designed for use during consultation and are jointly developed through collaboration between hospital clinicians and community clinicians
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