Impact of treatment on hepatitis C virus transmission and incidence in Egypt: A case for treatment as prevention

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Egypt has launched a hepatitis C virus (HCV) treatment programme using direct-acting antivirals (DAAs). Our aim was to assess the impact of five plausible programme scale-up and sustainability scenarios for HCV treatment as prevention in Egypt. We developed and analysed a mathematical model to assess programme impact using epidemiologic, programming and health economics measures. The model was parametrized with current and representative natural history, HCV prevalence and programme data. HCV incidence in Egypt is declining, but will persist at a considerable level for decades unless controlled by interventions. Across the five programme scenarios, 1.75-5.60 million treatments were administered by 2030. Reduction in incidence (annual number of new infections) by 2030 ranged between 29% and 99%, programme-attributed reduction in incidence rate (new infections per susceptible person per year) ranged between 18% and 99%, number of infections averted ranged between 42 393 and 469 599, and chronic infection prevalence reached as low as 2.8%-0.1%. Reduction in incidence rate year by year hovered around 7%-15% in the first decade of the programme in most scenarios. Treatment coverage in 2030 ranged between 24.9% and 98.8%, and number of treatments required to avert one new infection ranged between 9.5 and 12.1. Stipulated targets for HCV by 2030 could not be achieved without scaling-up treatment to 365 000 per year and sustaining it for a decade. In conclusion, DAA scale-up will have an immense and immediate impact on HCV incidence in Egypt. Elimination by 2030 is feasible if sufficient resources are committed to programme scale-up and sustainability. HCV treatment as prevention is a potent and effective prevention approach.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)486-495
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Viral Hepatitis
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2017
Externally publishedYes



  • Egypt
  • hepatitis C virus
  • incidence
  • mathematical model
  • treatment as prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology

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