County Seeking Funding For Free Hepatitis C Testing

Crawford County Health Department Director Honor Evans said she is pursuing funding for free Hepatitis C testing kits that can provide results in just 20 minutes.

Evans said there is a high demand for the test and the virus is on the rise due, in part, because of the opioid epidemic. 

“There is a correlation,” said Evans, who noted that people come to the health department for STD testing and also want a hepatitis screening. 

Evans is trying to use leftover grant money to purchase the kits, which are costly. The idea would be to provide free HCV testing for as long as they can.

“As long as it’s sustainable and we keep getting the grant,” Evans said. “I hate to start providing it and then take it away. I hope it will get the ball rolling.”

Crawford County is one of 13 counties in Missouri at risk for an HCV or HIV spike or epidemic due to opioid usage, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information. 

Read more on where Crawford County ranks in Missouri and nationally for a spike or epidemic in HCV or HIV in the Nov. 28 issue of the Independent News.

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