Awareness of Hepatitis C Virus Seropositivity and Chronic Infection in the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL)

J Immigr Minor Health. 2016 Dec;18(6):1257-1265. doi: 10.1007/s10903-016-0350-1.


Few population-based studies have assessed awareness of hepatitis C virus (HCV) seropositivity and chronic infection. We report awareness of HCV seropositivity and chronic infection and correlates of awareness in a multi-city (Bronx, Miami, Chicago, and San Diego) community-dwelling population sample of United States (US) Hispanics/Latinos recruited during 2008-2011. Included were 260 HCV-seropositive participants, among whom 190 had chronic HCV. Among those with chronic HCV, 46 % had been told by a doctor that they had liver disease and 32 % had been told that they had HCV-related liver disease. Among those with chronic HCV who also lacked health insurance (37 % of those with chronic HCV), only 8 % had been told that they had HCV-related liver disease. As compared with the uninsured, those with insurance were over five times more likely to be aware of having HCV-related liver disease (44 %). Sex, age, education, city of residence, and birthplace were not associated with HCV awareness. Less than half of Hispanics/Latinos were aware of their HCV chronic infection. Lack of health insurance may be an important barrier to HCV awareness in this population.

Keywords: Awareness; Hepatitis C virus; Hispanic; Latino; United States.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Awareness*
  • Female
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / ethnology*
  • Hispanic or Latino / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medically Uninsured / statistics & numerical data
  • Middle Aged
  • Public Health
  • Risk Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • United States
  • Young Adult