Establishment of an outreach, grouping healthcare system to achieve microelimination of HCV for uremic patients in haemodialysis centres (ERASE-C)

Gut. 2021 Dec;70(12):2349-2358. doi: 10.1136/gutjnl-2020-323277. Epub 2020 Dec 10.


Objective: HCV prevails in uremic haemodialysis patients. The current study aimed to achieve HCV microelimination in haemodialysis centres through a comprehensive outreach programme.

Design: The ERASE-C Campaign is an outreach programme for the screening, diagnosis and group treatment of HCV encompassing 2323 uremic patients and 353 medical staff members from 18 haemodialysis centres. HCV-viremic subjects were linked to care for directly acting antiviral therapy or received on-site sofosbuvir/velpatasvir therapy. The objectives were HCV microelimination (>80% reduction of the HCV-viremic rate 24 weeks after the end of the campaign in centres with ≥90% of the HCV-viremic patients treated) and 'No-C HD' (no HCV-viremic subjects at the end of follow-up).

Results: At the preinterventional screening, 178 (7.7%) uremic patients and 2 (0.6%) staff members were HCV-viremic. Among them, 146 (83.9%) uremic patients received anti-HCV therapy (41 link-to-care; 105 on-site sofosbuvir/velpatasvir). The rates of sustained virological response (SVR12, undetectable HCV RNA 12 weeks after the end of treatment) in the full analysis set and per-protocol population were 89.5% (94/105) and 100% (86/86), respectively, in the on-site treatment group, which were comparable with the rates of 92.7% (38/41) and 100% (38/38), respectively, in the link-to-care group. Eventually, the HCV-viremic rate decreased to 0.9% (18/1,953), yielding an 88.3% reduction from baseline. HCV microelimination and 'No-C HD' were achieved in 92.3% (12/13) and 38.9% (7/18) of the haemodialysis centres, respectively.

Conclusion: Outreach strategies with mass screenings and on-site group treatment greatly facilitated HCV microelimination in the haemodialysis population.

Clinicaltrialsgov identifier: NCT03803410 and NCT03891550.

Keywords: HCV; antiviral therapy; infectious disease; liver.

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