Level 6, Seminar Room
Wallace Wurth Building
Sydney NSW 2052
The Kirby Institute is pleased to present:
Mr Stuart Loveday- Chief Executive Officer- Hepatitis NSW
SURF’S UP! After the tsunami of people with hepatitis C coming forward for DAA treatments and cure has subsided, will future treatment needs leave communities and health services drowning, or waving, furiously?
On 1 March 2016, new direct acting antiviral treatments for people with hepatitis C were listed on Australia’s Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. Against all odds, Equal Treatment Access was achieved, with fully funded access to the world’s best treatments available for all people in Australia living with hep C, regardless of their extent of liver disease and regardless of the route of transmission.
In the four months from March to June 2016, nearly 23,000 people in Australia are estimated to have accessed the new DAAs. That’s nearly 10% of the entire population of people in Australia estimated to be living with chronic hepatitis C. That FIRST WAVE of treatment will continue for some time, but already it has started to slow.
In NSW particularly there is a welcome focus on supporting people with hepatitis C accessing OST and other AOD services to prioritise treatment and cure in their lives. Other priority populations will also be included in this much smaller, SECOND WAVE of treatment.
But what of those people living with hep C who are hidden from view? It is estimated that they comprise the majority of people currently living with hepatitis C. We must support all people with hep C to access these life-saving treatments, so that they can stop their liver disease from progressing to liver cancer, end stage liver failure and early death. We must prepare now for a forthcoming, and vitally important THIRD WAVE of treatment.
Stuart Loveday is the CEO of Hepatitis NSW, Australia’s first and largest community based organisation and health promotion charity working for and on behalf of people with viral hepatitis. He is a former President and was a founder and continuous executive board member of Hepatitis Australia from 1997 to 2013.
Having served on a range of national Australian hepatitis committees and working parties since 1994, Stuart represents Hepatitis NSW on the NSW Ministry of Health’s Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C Strategies Implementation Committee, serves on the Board of the NSW Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network and on a range of other national and NSW hepatitis advisory, governance and research committees.
He is currently President of the Board of the Community Restorative Centre, a highly regarded and effective not-for-profit charity in NSW supporting people returning from NSW prisons to the broader community.
Stuart has a strong interest in improved and equitable community access to hepatitis C and B management and treatment in Australia and contributes extensively to advocacy for evidence-based harm reduction policy and practice in illicit drug settings and in prison. He has written for a wide range of publications and education resources.