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Recognize that Berkshire County, as well as the rest of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, has seen a large increase in the number of hepatitis C cases and that this has a direct correlation with the increase in IV drug use including heroin and other opioids;
Describe the two epidemics of HCV infection in Massachusetts;
Explain the increases of HCV infection in young people in the state;
Recognize the basic structure of the hepatitis C virus and its modes of transmission;
Discuss how HCV is transmitted and who is at risk;
Discuss basic treatment options and access issues;
Summarize the key guidelines and reports addressing HCV infection nationally;
Describe components of a drug user health program;
Describe the drug user health services available in Berkshire County;
Describe the requirements for authorizing a state-funded syringe exchange program;
Describe the importance of advocacy for services for people who inject drugs;
Describe the proven HCV prevention strategies for hard-to-reach populations who decline to use “brick and mortar” services;
Discuss the rights of drug users and describe ways to advocate for the rights of drug users.
A variety of the listed populations will be discussed at this event.