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Hepatitis C

Liver (Cambridge Liver Unit)

Our services

The Eastern Region Hepatitis C Operational Delivery Network (HCV ODN) provides testing, treatment and support to people with HCV across the East of England. Our services cover Cambridgeshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Bedfordshire.

Clinics take place in hospitals, drug and alcohol services, prisons and in community locations on our HCV clinical van.

Home test kits for HCV are also available via the NHS website (opens in a new tab).

If you would like any further information on our HCV service please call 01223 586614 (answerphone available).


Types of testing

If you think you might be in a risk group, you should be tested for HCV. Testing for HCV can be performed using:

  • A finger prick test
  • A mouth swab
  • Venous blood sampling

How often should I have a HCV test?

If you have ongoing risk factors for HCV, you should be tested every six months. Otherwise, a single test is enough. Risk factors are given below.

What is Hepatitis C?

Hepatitis C is a common blood borne virus (BBV) that can affect anyone and often does not have any symptoms. It is very easy to treat and cure and NHS England aim to eliminate it by 2025. For more information, please see the links below.

Anyone can catch Hepatitis C, but people in the following groups may be at higher risk:

  • Had a needlestick or sharps injury?
  • Vaccinations / dental / medical treatment (including cosmetic surgery) in countries outside of the UK?
  • Ever injected drugs or steroids?
  • Received blood clotting products before 1987 or had a blood transfusion or organ transplant before 1992?
  • Ever shared any drug taking equipment?
  • Ever lived with, or cared for someone who injected drugs or had Hep C?
  • Had man to man sex or attended a Chemsex party?
  • Had a tattoo or piercing that was home made or by an unlicensed practitioner?
  • Ever lived in a children’s home, prison or residential school?
  • Shard a razor / toothbrush hair / nail clippers?
  • Attended a Botox party?
  • Had sex with a man or woman who sells sex?
  • Had any liver problems e.g. abnormal liver blood tests or alcoholic liver disease?
  • Come from, or frequently visit a country with a higher rate of Hep C – Africa, Asia, The Caribbean, Central and South America, Eastern and Southern Europe, The Middle East, the Pacific Islands
  • Been born to a mother who has Hep C?

There are treatment centres available across the region in the following locations:

  • Basildon
  • Bedford
  • Cambridge
  • Great Yarmouth
  • Ipswich
  • Luton
  • Norwich
  • Peterborough
  • Southend

  • In HCV out-reach clinics
  • In Drug and Alcohol services
  • In GP out reach
  • In prisons

How to perform a Hepatitis-C test at home

If you have requested, or are thinking of requesting a free Hep C test kit to use at home, please watch this short video which will explain how to perform your test and read your results.

Treatment for Hep C

Is there treatment for HCV?

  • Treatment cures 95% of people.
  • Available for free on the NHS
  • With tablets that are easy to take with very few side effects
  • Short length of treatment (8 to 12 weeks)

Treatment is offered at an HCV clinic as close to you as possible.

More information