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Hep Express Issue 15

ABBREVIATIONS: ACIP, Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices; CDC, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; DVH, Division of Viral Hepatitis; HAV, hepatitis A virus; HBV, hepatitis B virus; HCV, hepatitis C virus; IAC, Immunization Action Coalition; IDU, injection drug user; MMWR, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report; MSM, men who have sex with men; STD, sexually transmitted disease; VIS, Vaccine Information Statement; WHO, World Health Organization.
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(1 of 8)
March 18, 2004
CDC RELEASES "DEAR COLLEAGUE" LETTER ON RECOMMENDED STD PREVENTION SERVICES FOR MSM

On March 8, 2004, CDC released a "Dear Colleague" letter targeted to public health programs and private providers who serve MSM. The letter is intended to encourage and facilitate efforts to deliver integrated and appropriate services to populations at risk.

The letter recommends that clinicians routinely identify sexually active MSM and provide

HIV counseling and testing at least annually;
Testing for syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia at least annually;
and Hepatitis A and hepatitis B vaccination.

The continued high rates of multiple STDs among MSM underscore the importance and need for the delivery of comprehensive STD-prevention services in both the public and private sectors. Studies suggest that most (65%-85%) MSM receive primary health care from private providers; fewer (2%-5%) receive primary health care from public health clinics or community clinics.

The "Dear Colleague" letter was signed by the directors of CDC's Division of Viral Hepatitis, Division of Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Division of Immunization Services, and Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention. The letter can be accessed at http://www.immunize.org/msm/dearcolleague.pdf

The recommendations discussed in this letter can be studied in more detail in CDC's 2002 "Sexually Transmitted Diseases Treatment Guidelines" at http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/PDF/rr/rr5106.pdf
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March 18, 2004
HBF ADDS A NATIONAL LIBRARY OF MEDICINE TUTORIAL TO ITS WEBSITE

The Hepatitis B Foundation (HBF) announces the addition of a new National Library of Medicine (NLM) tutorial to its website. The tutorial teaches the viewer, through a step-by-step approach, how to search the MEDLINE, MEDLINEplus, and Clinicaltrials.gov databases. The tutorial was made possible through a grant from NLM to expand hepatitis B information and education delivery on the Internet.

To access this resource, go to: http://www.hepb.org/nlmtutorial
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(3 of 8)
March 18, 2004
CDC WORKBOOK ON SHARPS INJURY PREVENTION PROGRAMS AVAILABLE ONLINE

CDC has released a new resource on sharps injury prevention programs, "Workbook for Designing, Implementing, and Evaluating a Sharps Injury Prevention Program."

Occupational exposure to bloodborne pathogens from needlesticks and other sharps injuries is a serious problem, but it is often preventable. CDC estimates that each year 385,000 needlesticks and other sharps-related injuries are sustained by hospital-based health care personnel. Similar injuries occur in other health care settings, such as nursing homes, clinics, emergency care services, and private homes. Sharps injuries are primarily associated with occupational transmission of hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV), and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), but they may be implicated in the transmission of more than 20 other pathogens.

The workbook's goal is to help programs

Assess the facility's sharps injury prevention program; Document the development and implementation of planning and  prevention activities; and Evaluate the impact of prevention interventions.

The home page for the workbook can be accessed at http://www.cdc.gov/sharpssafety
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(4 of 8)
March 18, 2004
AASLD PRACTICE GUIDELINES PUBLISHED ONLINE

Practice guidelines for the diagnosis, management, and treatment of hepatitis B and hepatitis C are available on the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) website.

"Diagnosis Management and Treatment of Hepatitis C"
http://www.aasld.org/pdffiles/Prac._Guide_Hep_C.pdf

"Chronic Hepatitis B"
http://www.aasld.org/pdffiles/prac_guide__hep_B.pdf

"Chronic Hepatitis B: Update of Recommendations"
http://www.aasld.org/pdffiles/update_chronichep_B.pdf

AASLD represents more than 2,400 physicians, researchers, and allied hepatology health professionals. To visit the AASLD website, go to: http://www.aasld.org
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March 18, 2004
TWO NEW ISSUES OF "VIRAL HEPATITIS" AVAILABLE ON VHPB WEBSITE

The Viral Hepatitis Prevention Board (VHPB) website has been updated and includes two new issues of the publication "Viral Hepatitis."

"Viral Hepatitis," Volume 12 , Number 1, is prepared from material presented at the VHPB meeting on March 13-24, 2004, in Geneva, Switzerland.

"Viral Hepatitis," Volume 12, Number 2, is a special edition that includes the most recent updates of recommendations, consensus statements, and meeting conclusions produced by, or in collaboration with, VHPB during 1996-2003.

To access the ready-to-copy (PDF) versions of these issues, go to: http://www.vhpb.org/Default.asp?navItem=newsletters

To access the home page of the VHPB website, go to: http://www.vhpb.org
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March 18, 2004
WHO PUBLISHES INJECTION SAFETY DOCUMENTS

The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that in some countries nearly 50% of the injections may be given with used, contaminated injection equipment. WHO also estimates that annually, unsafe injections account for 33% of new HBV infections, 40% of new HCV infections, and 5% of new HIV infections. This means that improvements in injection safety could prevent 22 million people from acquiring HBV infections, two million people from HCV infections, and 260,000 from HIV infection each year.

WHO recently released the following documents related to injection safety:

"A Guide for Supervising Injections" (Developed in collaboration with the International Council of Nurses)
http://uqconnect.net/signfiles/Files/InjectionSupervisionGuideFinal.pdf

"Safety of Injections: Questions & Answers"
http://uqconnect.net/signfiles/Files/QuestionAndAnswersInjectionSafety.pdf

"Safety of Injections: A Glossary"
http://uqconnect.net/signfiles/Files/GlossaryInjectionSafety.pdf

"Safety of Injections: Global Facts & Figures"
http://uqconnect.net/signfiles/Files/FactAndFiguresInjectionSafety.pdf
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March 18, 2004
NATIONAL HARM REDUCTION CONFERENCE TO TAKE PLACE NOVEMBER 11-14, 2004

The 5th National Harm Reduction Conference will take place in New Orleans, November 11-14, 2004. The title of this year's program is "Working Under Fire: Drug Users Health and Justice 2004." The conference is sponsored by the Harm Reduction Coalition and co-sponsored by 39 other organizations.

Conference objectives include providing a safe forum for the exchange of information, ideas, and strategies for incorporating harm reduction into direct services, public policy, and individual lives, and offering technical information on program development and implementation.

The deadline for abstract submission is April 30, 2004.

For complete information on conference objectives and activities and details on abstract submission and registration, go to: http://www.harmreduction.org/conf2004/index.html
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(8 of 8)
March 18, 2004
UPDATED: IAC MAKES MINOR CHANGES TO ITS PROFESSIONAL-EDUCATION SHEET "HEPATITIS B FACTS: TESTING AND VACCINATION"

[The following is cross posted from the Immunization Action Coalition's "IAC EXPRESS" electronic newsletter, 2/23/04.]

IAC recently updated some information on its professional-education sheet "Hepatitis B Facts: Testing and Vaccination."

To access a web-text (HTML) version of the revised sheet, go to:
http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p2110.htm

To access a ready-to-copy (PDF) version, go to:
http://www.immunize.org/catg.d/p2110.pdf


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