Bold move from leadership will reduce deaths from hepatitis C in Oregon
OREGON CITY, OR, November 30, 2018 – Caring Ambassadors Program applauds the bold leadership shown by Governor Brown and the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) this week. On Wednesday, the Governor introduced her budget which includes funding for hepatitis C treatment and a forward-looking statement that brings our state into alignment with the World Health Organization’s goal of hepatitis C elimination by 2030.
From Governor Brown’s budget “• Ending Hepatitis C – New treatments exist to cure individuals living with Hepatitis C. An investment in the 2017-19 biennium enabled OHA to expand treatment to Oregon Health Plan patients with later stages of the disease. The Governor’s Budget increases this investment with an additional $10 million General Fund to ensure treatment is available to Oregon Health Plan members with any stage of the disease and puts the state on track to eradicate the cascading effects of Hepatitis C infections.” [2019-2021 Governor’s Budget, State of Oregon]
The second bold move critical to hepatitis C elimination was the vote on Thursday by the Pharmacy and Therapeutics committee to remove all restrictions on access to the curative treatments.
Currently, Oregon has the highest hepatitis C mortality rate in the country. These aggressive moves by leadership can change that unfortunate statistic and save future lives and precious healthcare resources for all Oregonians.
“We look forward to working with the legislature to ensure the funding remains in the budget and with OHA and the community to develop Oregon’s elimination strategy,” said Lorren Sandt, Executive Director of Caring Ambassadors Program. “We have all the tools now to make elimination a reality, thanks to the support of our leadership.”
About Caring Ambassadors Program
The Caring Ambassadors supports individuals in gaining control of their healthcare, regardless of the illness they face.
We provide information, tools, and resources to help those with any long-term disease not only manage their health care after a diagnosis but improve their quality of life and capacity for healing. As an advocacy organization, we both fight for patient rights and work to build a new generation of patient and healthcare champions. Our disease-specific programs for Hepatitis C and Lung Cancer have been helping people obtain the support, assistance, and information they need for over 20 years.