Hepatitis C Virus–Related Knowledge and Willingness to Receive Treatment Among Patients on Methadone Maintenance
Published Date:2014 Jul-Aug
Source:J Addict Med. 8(4):249-257.
Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
Models Of Care For Hepatitis C
Opiate Substitution Treatment
Persons Who Inject Drugs
Substance Abuse, Intravenous
Pubmed Central ID:PMC4747636
Funding:CC999999/Intramural CDC HHS/United States
Although persons who inject drugs have high prevalence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, few receive treatment mostly because of lack of knowledge about the infection and its treatment. We assessed the level of HCV-related knowledge and willingness to participate in HCV treatment among methadone-maintained patients.
A 30-item survey covering HCV-related knowledge and willingness to engage in HCV-related education and treatment was developed and completed by 320 methadone-maintained patients.
Respondents’ mean age was 53 ± 8.7 years, 59.5% were male, 55.1% were African American, and 38.3% were Hispanic. The mean duration of methadone maintenance was 7 ± 6.7 years. In the preceding 6 months, 6.9% of patients reported injection drug use, whereas 37.3% used noninjection drugs. Hepatitis C virus seropositivity was self-reported by 46.3% of patients. The majority of patients (78%) expressed willingness to participate in HCV-related education and to receive HCV treatment. Most patients (54.7%) correctly answered 5 or more of 7 questions assessing HCV knowledge. Hepatitis C virus–seropositive individuals and prior attendees at HCV-related educational activities demonstrated a higher level of HCV-related knowledge (P < 0.001 and P = 0.002, respectively). Younger patients (P = 0.014), those willing to attend an HCV-related educational activity (P < 0.001), and those with higher–HCV-related knowledge (P = 0.029) were more accepting of HCV treatment. Fear of medication-related side effects was the most common reason for treatment avoidance.
The majority of patients reported willingness to receive HCV-related education and treatment. Treatment willingness was significantly associated with previous attendance at an HCV educational activity and a higher level of HCV-related knowledge.
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