The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department (LLCHD) reminds the public that it offers screening, counseling and referral for hepatitis C. The public may call 402-441-8065 to make an appointment or to speak to a nurse about risk factors, screening options and eligibility for free testing.
Hepatitis C is a life-threatening infection that affects an estimated 3.2 million Americans, most of whom are "baby boomers," born from 1945 through 1965. Many baby boomers were infected with hepatitis C when they were in their teens and twenties. Some may have become infected through blood transfusions or other exposure before universal precautions and widespread blood screening began in 1992. Others may have become infected from drug experimentation, even if it was only once decades ago.
While new treatments can cure the majority of hepatitis C cases, most people do not seek care because they do not have symptoms. Diagnosing hepatitis C early is critical because the longer the virus goes undetected, the greater a person's risk of developing serious liver disease, including liver cancer and cirrhosis.
Talk to your health care provider about hepatitis C testing if you meet any of these criteria:
For more information on LLCHD, visit health.lincoln.ne.gov.