Dr. Wang on the Rationale for Viral Hepatitis Screening to Prevent HCC

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Su H. Wang, MD, MPH, discusses the rationale for the integration of viral hepatitis screening and care in a hospital system as the first steps for preventing liver cancers like hepatocellular carcinoma.

Su H. Wang, MD, MPH, medical director, The Center for Asian Health, Saint Barnabas Medical Center, RWJBarnabas Health, and president, World Hepatitis Alliance, discusses the rationale for the integration of viral hepatitis screening and care in a hospital system as the first steps for preventing liver cancers like hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC).

In response to the rising rates of HCC, both in the United States and around the world, investigators set out to examine the integration of an automated screening program for viral hepatitis into a primary care setting, according to Wang. In the United States, rates of HCC increased by 72% from 2003 to 2012, according to Wang. Moreover, the number of deaths from HCC are increasing more rapidly compared with other cancers, and HCC continues to be the third most lethal type of cancer, Wang explains. Viral hepatitis B and hepatitis C are a large driver of HCC rates in the United States and are thought to be responsible for up to 65% of diagnosed cases, Wang concludes.

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