Skip to main content

Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-08238: Anas Sarwar (Glasgow)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 17 March 2017

To ask the Scottish Government how many people in Scotland will need to be treated each year to meets its aim to eliminate hepatitis C as a public health concern by 2030.

Answered by: Aileen Campbell 29 March 2017

The Scottish Government has a strategic target of reducing hepatitis C related liver failure (i.e. life threatening disease associated with hepatitis C) by 75% between 2015 and 2020. Modelling work undertaken by Health Protection Scotland and Glasgow Caledonian University has informed the Scottish Government Hepatitis C Treatment and Therapies Group’s annual treatment number target.

The modelling indicated that 1,500 people with moderate to severe disease needed to be treated annually during 2015 – 20 to achieve a 75% reduction in hepatitis C-related liver failure. The Scottish Government’s strategy in terms of elimination of hepatitis C as a serious public health concern is very ambitious, given that the World Health Organisation’s target is a 10% reduction in HCV-related mortality by 2020.

The treatment target for 2017-18 will be 1,800 - an increase of 300 from that for 2016-17. In the context of this strategy there are early encouraging signs that it is working. In 2015 the number of new hepatitis C-related liver failure case presentations declined by 22%. Figures for 2016 figures will be available in mid-2017.