Community-based assessment and treatment of Hepatitis C virus-related liver disease, injecting drug and alcohol use amongst people who are homeless: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Hashim, A, Macken, L, Jones, A M, McGeer, M, Aithal, G P and Verma, S (2021) Community-based assessment and treatment of Hepatitis C virus-related liver disease, injecting drug and alcohol use amongst people who are homeless: a systematic review and meta-analysis. International Journal of Drug Policy. a103342. ISSN 0955-3959

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Abstract

Background/aims: We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis addressing community-based assessment and treatment of hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related liver disease, injecting drug use (IDU) and alcohol use amongst people who are homeless (PWAH).

Methods: Using systematic review methodology, databases were searched (MEDLINE/ EMBASE/CINAHL) for studies combining PWAH, HCV-related liver disease and community assessment until December 2019. Studies with a sample size > 30, with PWAH constituting at least 30% of the cohort were included and a quality assessment performed. Pooled estimates of key indicators were analysed using meta-analysis.

Results: We identified 39 studies (n=13,918), 37 categorised as poor quality (Newcastle-Ottawa Scale). Prevalence of homelessness ranged between 30%-100% (37 studies). Eight studies provided all of the following: HCV screening, alcohol/substance use/liver fibrosis assessment and HCV treatment. No study provided interventions for alcohol use, with two providing opioid substitution treatment. Alcohol use prevalence (24 studies) was 4%-97%, being 59% (95% CI 20%-92%) in four studies that included only PWAH. Recent IDU prevalence (16 studies) was 7%-73%, being 21% (95% CI 17%-26%) in four studies that included only PWAH. HCV seroprevalence (25 studies) was 2.5% - 58%; in 13 studies that included only PWAH, this was 20% (95% CI 12%-30%). Prevalence of F4 fibrosis (nine studies) was 6%-28%, being 7% and 16% in two studies that included only PWAH. Direct acting antiviral-based intention-to-treat sustained virological response (SVR) rates (five studies) were 82%-92%, being 92% in the one study that included only PWAH. In the only two randomised controlled trials (RCT) identified, community-based interventions (mental health/peer mentor) significantly increased linkage to care (p=0.04), HCV treatment (p=0.005) and SVR rates (p=0.018).

Conclusion: The burden from alcohol/IDU and HCV, and consequently liver disease in PWAH needs addressing. RCT trials assessing community-based interventions to improve liver health in PWAH are needed.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: liver cirrhosis, alcoholism, hepatitis c, homeless person, community health services, systematic review
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Clinical and Experimental Medicine
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 04 Jun 2021 07:52
Last Modified: 30 Sep 2021 11:10
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/99578

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