The Caring Ambassadors Program Addresses HCV: The Bigg Elimination Tribute Project
In honor of Hepatitis Awareness Month, Caring Ambassadors Program launched the Bigg Elimination Tribute Project, a free online hepatitis C virus (HCV) training program. As HCV rates continue to rise in the United States, we are missing critical opportunities to move toward hepatitis elimination. As systems ramp up testing for COVID- 19, there are opportunities to integrate testing for all infectious diseases. The Caring Ambassador Program’s module-based training program succinctly lays out the necessary steps to incorporate HCV screening, diagnosis, and cure for patients living with HCV into existing infrastructures.
The Caring Ambassadors Program was fortunate to have worked side-by-side with Dan Bigg in Chicago. The Bigg Elimination Tribute Project honors the late Dan Bigg, the godfather of overdose prevention via the use of naloxone, and a fierce advocate for HCV elimination. The vision of The Bigg Elimination Tribute Project is to eliminate HCV by curing people with chronic infection and preventing new infections.
The goal of the project is twofold:
- influence the health practices of people living with chronic HCV with a focus on people who use drugs; and
- build the capacity of community service programs that serve people living with or at risk for HCV.
This free, online, self-paced 7-module series has been developed to help establish replicable frameworks for HCV prevention and education using harm reduction strategies. The overall goal is to build attendees' capacity, confidence, and knowledge to integrate responsive hepatitis C screening, testing, linkage-to-care/cure, and support programs into existing infrastructures. The training follows the hepatitis C cure cascade from diagnosis through cure.
Learn more about the project and register for the course at https://hepcchallenge.org/bigg/.
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