The Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health & Society have released the Hepatitis B Patient and Clinical Practice Survey report. This study investigated hepatitis B knowledge and experience of hepatitis B clinical management in liver clinics and general practice among people living with chronic hepatitis B.
This study was conducted in two phases using qualitative and quantitative methods. Phase one consisted of semi-structured interviews with 10 people with chronic hepatitis B, and 13 clinicians experienced in providing hepatitis B related clinical care. Phase two is a questionnaire-based survey among 93 people with chronic hepatitis B.
This study recommends:
Educational interventions are needed to improve the knowledge of people with hepatitis B about their infection, with a particular focus on misconceptions about transmission, the silent nature of the infection, and available treatments options.
Educational interventions need to address the needs of people living with hepatitis B with a low level of academic education and English proficiency.
Clinical assessment and management of chronic hepatitis B needs to extend beyond biological evaluations and recognise and address psychological health and social life needs. Counselling could address the most common concerns, including feeling worried about getting liver cancer and infecting other people.
The most common complaints of people with hepatitis B in attending the liver clinics related to limited logistic and human resources capacity of liver clinics. Developing a model of hepatitis B shared care that engages GPs could shift a considerable load of liver clinic clients to general practices which are easier access and have more flexible working hours.