The opioid epidemic has increased the number of people who inject drugs in the US, and thereby substantially increased the risk of transmission of blood-borne viruses, including HIV, hepatitis C virus, and hepatitis B virus through use of shared equipment. Advanced planning can facilitate an effective coordinated response for communities faced with the possibility of future outbreaks of HIV or hepatitis C among networks of people who inject drugs (PWID).
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a new resource to support health departments dealing with issues at the intersection of the opioid epidemic and infectious diseases. Managing HIV and Hepatitis C Outbreaks Among People Who Inject Drugs: A Guide for State and Local Health Departments is intended to help health departments prepare and plan for an outbreak of HIV or hepatitis C among these populations. The guide includes considerations for developing an outbreak response plan to minimize the impact of the outbreak on the community and stop further transmission. The document also outlines strategies to detect and investigate a possible outbreak.
Advanced planning can facilitate an effective coordinated response for communities faced with the possibility of future outbreaks of HIV or hepatitis C among networks of PWID. Read now to find resources that can help you address the intersection of opioid use and infectious disease.