Hepatitis C virus infections are a great medical and health politics problem because of their relatively frequent occurrence and above all because of the high probability of a chronic and partly progredient progress of the disease.
A great number of non-diagnosed hepatitis C virus carriers live in Austria. Often people carrying the virus only learn about their chronic disease years after having been infected with HCV. In spring 2003 an information campaign called "Action Hepatitis C" was initiated which serves as a relevant starting point for this assessment. This campaign is based on the assumption that an early diagnosis of an HCV infection is also highly relevant for the national economy.
Crucial points of this assessment were a systematic literature analysis for the following subject areas:
- Overview Hepatitis C (epidemiology, diagnosis, therapy options)
- Analysis of scientific surveys about medical and health economical questions and
- In particular an up to date overview of the situation of hepatitis C in Austria: Epidemiology of HCV-infections, a listing of the current situation of HCV infected people which also takes into consideration their quality of life and life expectancy, as well as the practical application of different therapy options and their respective costs.