“Speak up,” she writes. “Come out. Tell us your names.”
She goes on: “The secrecy surrounding HCV has big consequences.
Public health officials have long struggled to determine how many
Americans have HCV, but most estimates put the figure somewhere between 3
million and 4 million.”
Heckman, a longtime friend and mentor, knows what she’s talking
about. She contracted hepatitis C through a blood transfusion when she
was an infant. In 2010, she wrote a moving series
about the role the disease plays in her life, her struggle with the
stigma of hepatitis, and her experience in a clinical trial testing
drugs expected to cure it.